“The Black Cat” by Edgar Allan Poe


Please remember that you cannot trust a first person narrator to be telling you the truth:

1.      Where is the narrator as he tells his story?

2.      What will happen to him the following morning?

3.      Why is he telling us this sick story?

4.      With whom did the narrator spend most of his childhood instead of other children?   

5.      What is wrong with the following sentence? “To those who have cherished an affection for a faithful and sagacious dog, I need hardly be at the trouble of explaining the nature or the intensity of the gratification thus derivable.”

6.      Why did he marry his wife?

7.      Why did the narrator’s life start to go bad? 

8.      Why does the narrator gouge out the eye of the cat?

9.      What happens on the night of the fire?

10.  In what form does Pluto return from the dead? 

11.  What accident happens in the basement while the narrator is chasing after that darn cat (with an axe)?

12.  What happens when he raps on the basement wall with his cane?



OK, Sherlock, put the clues together. What has this narrator been up to all along?

What are the true intentions of the narrator in Poe’s “The Black Cat”?

Why does he tell us this story?