Wednesday, May 29, 2019
Poes Fall of The House of Usher Essay: Beyond Empiricism and Transcend
Beyond Empiricism and Transcendentalism in House of Usher When Edgar Allan Poe wrote The twilight of the House of Usher, two factors greatly influenced his writing. A first influence was John Lockes intellection of Empiricism, which was the idea that all knowledge was gained by experiences, exclusively through the senses. A second vital influence was Transcendentalism, which was a reaction to Empiricism. While John Locke believed that reality or truth was constituted by the material world and by the senses, Transcendentalists believed that reality and truth exist within the spiritual or ideal world. They believed that the external world was dependent solely on the conscious. Beverly Voloshin suggests that Poe presents transcendental projects which threaten to fail down(prenominal) rather than upward (19). Here it becomes obvious that there is a strong connection between John Lockes Empiricism and the resulting ideas of Transcendence, and the powerful effect that they had on Poe and other emerging Romantic writers of that time. In The Fall of the House of Usher, Poe establishes a new type of literature, one that emphasizes aspects of Empiricism as well as the idea of Transcendence. Poe uses this unique literature to introduce the Usher mansion and its intriguing and very troubled inhabitants. Locke wrote the Essay Concerning Human Understanding, which was published in 1690, and is credited with opening up the period of Enlightenment in Europe. Its strongest connection to Poe was that it had a late popularity in New England(Voloshin 18). With this popularity in New England, many of the writers of the time either voiced their grace of Empiricism, or took an opposite stance in their literature. Locke believed th... ...an upward. The tales have a paradoxical structure in which transcendence is figured as an outward or downward movement, as the method for going beyond the universe of Lockean empiricism is to go through it (Voloshin 19). Poe brings this out with the narrators depression and the unredeemed dreariness of thought. The language that is used in The Fall of the House of Usher presents a connection between the mental and the physical world, which then correlates with the debate between Transcendentalists and the empiricism presented nearly two centuries before. whole shebang Cited Koster, Donald N. Transcendentalism in America. Boston Twayne, 1975. Sahakian, Mabel Lewis and William S. John Locke. Boston Twayne, 1975. Voloshin, Beverly. Transcendence Downward An Essay on Usher and Ligeia. Modern Language Studies 18 (1988) 18-29.