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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The Black Cat Psychopathic Serial Killer

Option #3

          More often than not, when catastrophe strikes and massacres are committed, people are shocked to find out the identity of the murderer. Friends and colleagues of the murderer say he or she was a friendly person who never really showed signs of such capability. This is because serial killers have “the ability to behave in a matter that arouses no suspicion” ( However, there are of course a few common traits serial killers share which include extreme anti-social behavior, changing from being very sociable to preferring isolation, love of setting fires, taking pleasure in harming animals, and, even after seeing hurtful actions, showing no remorse.
            In Edgar Allen Poe’s short story “The Black Cat,” the narrator seems like a normal, friendly person at first while he talks about his love for animals and his humane personality. As the narrator continues, the serial killer traits mentioned above become apparent. “I grew, day by day, more moody, more irritable, more regardless of the feelings of others. I suffered myself to use intemperate language to my wife. At length, I even offered her personal violence. My pets, of course, were made to feel the change in my disposition. I not only neglected, but ill-used them” (Poe 79). Later the narrator falls victim to his home burning down. But the cause of the fire is never revealed. Perhaps in his drunkenness or a fit of rage the narrator actually burned his own house down. The reader is left to decide that on his own but I can’t help but see another psychopath relation in this. And finally, the narrator kills his wife and shows no remorse. Instead he is busily thinking of how and where to conceal her body, and he’s even able to sleep peacefully that night! No sane person behaves so calmly and guiltless after such a crime.
            The serial killing actions of the narrator are evident he is a psychopath. And while he may have seemed amiable at first, no one who can harm such an endearing animal should ever be trusted! To death row the psychopath goes! 

"Early Signs of Serial Killers." Crime Museum. National Museum of Crime & Punishment, n.d. Web. 25 Sept. 2013. <>.
Poe, Edgar A. "The Black Cat." 1843. American Gothic Tales. Comp. Joyce Carol Oates. New York: Plume, 1996. 78-86. Print.

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