Poe wrote "The Murders in the Rue Morgue" at a time when crime was at the forefront in people's minds due to urban development. London had recently established its first professional police force and American cities were beginning to focus on scientific police work as newspapers reported murders and criminal trials. The tale has an underlying metaphor for the battle of brains vs. Physical strength, depicted as the orangutan as well as its owner, stand for violence: the orangutan is a murderer, while its owner admits he has abused the animal with a whip.
The analyst's brainpower overcomes their violence. Poe defines Dupin's method, ratiocination , using the example of a card player: "the extent of information obtained; lies not so much in the validity of the inference as in the quality of the observation. Dupin's method emphasizes the importance of reading and the written word. The newspaper accounts pique his curiosity; he learns about orangutans from a written account by "Cuvier" — likely Georges Cuvier , the French zoologist.
This method also engages the reader, who follows along by reading the clues himself. When Dupin asks the sailor for information about the murders, the sailor himself acts out a partial death: "The sailor's face flushed up as if he were struggling with suffocation Poe biographer Jeffrey Meyers sums up the significance of "The Murders in the Rue Morgue": "[it] changed the history of world literature.
The genre is distinctive from a general mystery story in that the focus is on analysis. Poe also portrays the police in an unsympathetic manner as a sort of foil to the detective. Upon its release, "The Murders in the Rue Morgue" and its author were praised for the creation of a new profound novelty.
These tales of ratiocination owe most of their popularity to being something in a new key. I do not mean to say that they are not ingenious — but people think them more ingenious than they are — on account of their method and air of method. In the "Murders in the Rue Morgue", for instance, where is the ingenuity in unraveling a web which you yourself Modern readers are occasionally put off by Poe's violation of an implicit narrative convention: readers should be able to guess the solution as they read.
The twist ending, however, is a sign of "bad faith" on Poe's part because readers would not reasonably include an orangutan on their list of potential murderers.
The word detective did not exist at the time Poe wrote "The Murders in the Rue Morgue",  though there were other stories that featured similar problem-solving characters. Hoffmann , in which Mlle. Poe may also have been expanding on previous analytical works of his own including the essay on " Maelzel's Chess Player " and the comedic "Three Sundays in a Week".
Murder victims in both stories, however, have their neck cut so badly that the head is almost entirely removed from the body. Poe originally titled the story "Murders in the Rue Trianon" but renamed it to better associate with death. It sold for 12 and a half cents. Poe did not take part in selecting which tales would be collected.
Auguste Dupin and the Paris setting. The original manuscript of "The Murders in the Rue Morgue" which was used for its first printing in Graham's Magazine was discarded in a wastebasket. An apprentice at the office, J.
Johnston, retrieved it and left it with his father for safekeeping. It was left in a music book, where it survived three house fires before being bought by George William Childs. In , Childs presented the manuscript, re-bound with a letter explaining its history, to Drexel University. Poe's name was not mentioned and many details, including the name of the Rue Morgue and the main characters "Dupin" became "Bernier" , were changed.
The editor of Le Commerce was accused of plagiarizing the story from La Quotidienne.
The accusation went to trial and the public discussion brought Poe's name to the attention of the French public. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about the short story. For other uses, see Rue Morgue. Novels portal. American Literature on Stage and Screen. The Murders in the Rue Morgue at Wikipedia's sister projects. Auguste Dupin. Edgar Allan Poe. Politian Billy Collins. Aimless Love. Poems Frederick Seidel. Love Poems. Sir Kristian Goldmund Aumann.
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Straight Razor and Other Poems brings together Salvatore Ala's new poems and selections from his privately published broadsides. It is a beautiful and original. Straight Razor and Other Poems brings together Salvatore Ala's new poems and selections from his privately published broadsides.
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