The Raven: Good or Bad?

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EL 266

"Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door --
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door,
                                       With such name as "Nevermore." (Poe, The Raven)

Throughout this poem, Poe says many uplifting things about the Raven, like he was "blessed" to have him above his chamber door, and the bird was "beguiling" him into smiling, which makes the Raven seem positive. Generally this black bird is seen as a bad omen, but I think the Raven was a much more positive symbol because of Poe's word choice.

On page 4, Poe writes that the Raven was sent by the angels to bring up memories of the lost Lenore. While this may have hurt at first, I think that the author was glad for the memories. Although directly after, he recants and says that the bird had to be sent from the "Tempter," I believe that he was more surprised than angry.

I guess this could really go either way, and there is overwhelming evidence that the Raven was a nuisance to the author, but I do think that we have to see his positive qualities as well.


Someone else in class wrote about how the Raven could be seen in a more positive light, but at the moment I can't remember who! I proposed that the Raven may even be Lenore, come back to visit the narrator. While there is no evidence to fully support this, the fact that the raven will not say it's name could be seen as supporting that it's Lenore.
I agree with you though, while the negative side of the Raven is portrayed most heavily, perhaps there is a bigger reason he is being haunted persay, but the Raven.

Katie Lantz said:

Hm.... I wonder who posted that. I'm going to have to go look.

But yes, I do agree that the Raven could possibly be Lenore, and if so, she wouldn't want to harm the narrator.

Kayla Lesko said:

Given the narrator's state of mind, it's not surprising that he would change his mind about the Raven.

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Kayla Lesko on The Raven: Good or Bad?: Given the narrator's state of
Katie Lantz on The Raven: Good or Bad?: Hm.... I wonder who posted tha
Heather Mourick on The Raven: Good or Bad?: Someone else in class wrote ab