In The Fall of The House of Usher, Edgar Allan Poe presents the short story of two men, Roderick Usher and the narrator. In the story, both men appear to experience drifting apart from the human consciousness. Usher seems to be struggling with psychotic depression, while the narrator is trying to figure out what is happening, as he was the sole reliable voice to understand the mind of Usher. The various aberration of Usher also tends to come to life as the narrator can also see them, apparitions are also with the ral
In the solidarity of Roderick Usher, he summons a childhood friend in to be near him in what he believes to be his final hours of his life.
The narrator in his observance states the following, “One of the phantasmagoric conceptions of my friend, partaking not so rigidly of the spirit of abstraction, may be shadowed forth, although feebly, in words” (Poe, par.5) Through this, it is evident the narrator was aware of the initial psychotic depression of Usher. Usher’s state seems to correlate with the major symptoms of psychotic depression, which include: not being oneself in cognitive and behavioral manners—which is at times caused by different interpretations of intrusions of daily task and associated with distress and the disability to maintain reality from fiction.
However, the active participation of the so-called hallucinations of Usher and the narrator make it less plausible of an argument to say Usher suffered from psychotic depression. The best explanation can be of “being qua being” a philosophical concept that nonexistent things do exist. Aristotle tries to explain the causation and explanation of certain things we see yet do not comprehend. He states that all things which have come to be known have an explanation to a cause from which they came.
A big example of this is the collapse of the house and sudden apparition of Usher’s sister. The house, the narrator explained, was sturdy but with one crack—the foundations of homes are what make houses fall. The sudden apparition of Madeline Usher, from what seemed to be her grave, does not make sense, as it is not possible for a human to survive more than a week without air or water. The sudden appearance and reality of these apparitions make the case that both, the house and Madeline, do exist just not in the human consciousness.
The eventual progress of the narrator falling with the psychotic tendencies of Usher make a great argument but mental disorders do not spread like viruses. The claim of metaphysics tends to be much greater in favor for both the narrator and Usher, since these so-called hallucinations are tangible within the story of Poe.
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