"The Tell-Tale Heart
Biographical Critique Assignment By: Bryce Berenschot
"TRUE! -- nervous -- very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why will you say that I am mad?"
The first line in the story says it all. He was very nervous about what was coming next in his life. Many events in his life have been dreadful and have made a terrible impact on his life, causing him to be nervous.
"Many a night, just at midnight, when all the world slept, it has welled up from my own bosom, deepening, with its dreadful echo, the terrors that distracted me."
This might be his way of describing his own sleeping pattern. Lack of sleep from all of the terror in his own life.
"I knew that sound well, too. It was the beating of the old man's heart."
I believe that he wrote this thinking of himself. He is picturing himself as the older man and does not like something about himself. He has no reason to dislike himself, yet he finds a way to do so. An example of this is how he likes the old man himself, but just does not like his eye.
"I then took up three planks from the flooring of the chamber, and deposited all between the scantlings. I then replaced the boards so cleverly, so cunningly, that no human eye -- not even his --could have detected any thing wrong."
In this part of the story he is describing how he hid the body well, but I think it is deeper than that. He is probably describing how he is trying his best to conceal his feelings and emotions on the inside and does not want anyone knowing how he feels. He did not want people detecting anything was wrong with him.
"But anything was better than this agony! Anything was more tolerable than this derision! I could bear those hypocritical smiles no longer! I felt that I must scream or die!"
This line shows he is still bottling up emotions and it is driving him mad. The more he holds it in the more pain he is in. He wants to let out his emotions, but he built up too high of a mental fence around him.