The Purloined Letter as a Detective Story
Edgar Allan Poe is considered as fit for any literary genre. Because it is thought that he wrote all the prototypes of literary genre. He was truly a mastermind. Basically Edgar Allan Poe gained achievement as a writer of Gothic romance. We have already scan how has proved himself in mastering a compilation between mythology and romance. His fame as a crime story writer is counted among the pioneer. His story ‘The Murders in The Rue Morgue’ is considered as the first ever detective story. Although it is a fact that when Edgar started writing crime fiction then, the word, ‘Detective’ was not produced.
It is a now fact that. Poe was inspired by ‘Memories’ whose writer set up the first detective bureau. Actually three years after the publication of the first book of the series, ‘The Purloined Letter‘ was published. In this story as in the former two stories. Dupin is shown as the central character. In a known article, a status of a passionate detective has been charted out where it has been told that, a passionate detective should have personal and emotional affection. He should only concentrate on his case. The Detective is made not by names but by actions. Here, in the story. Auguste Dupin does the same work, by concentrating on the activities related to the case. He dries to accumulate all the clues related to the case.
A detective in career should ever use the naturalistic way of solving case. In other words, he should not seek help from supernatural activities. A passionate detective should try to accumulate all the concentrated thoughts of the other characters into himself. So, that the process from inductive to deductive method in the art of ‘detection is mostly preferred. Dupin used the same process. He actually, initiated the method of ‘Ratiocination‘ which means the logical concentration of mind. The argumentative approach of the hero of the story, C. Auguste Dupin proves himself as a fitful detective agent.
Now, we should look at the thing that how the plot of story is successful as a detective story. ‘The Purloined Letter’ was neither too elaborate nor too short to explain. It detective plot requires more conspiracy and energy into the plot. Here in the story, we can see that, how the minister has his personal point of revenge against the Queen. So, as a fitful detective story, ‘The Purloined Letter‘ always plays on conspiracy level. The twist that resides at the end of the story priers that how never the story plot can consume the elements of conspiracy. Here, almost unexpectedly and miraculously He detective himself Quenches his personal evils and revenges. But the whole thing has been done silently and with full concentration that is mostly expected in a crime fiction.
“The evidence should be hiding”
However, from the perspectives of a crime fiction, ‘The Purloined Letter’ is a complete work of crime fiction. It has all the important elements stuffed into the story. The fiction has all the features of crime fiction. The intensity and thematic mechanism of the story are designed with a crafted hand by the writer. The role of Dupin is an exemplary for the other detectives in the town. His theory has created a sense of powerful imagination in the mind of the mid readers. Now, they are accustomed of the powerful concentration of mind.
In a detective story, some prototype elements remain at the background. These elements help to force the forward and more the effect more vibrant. In ‘The Purloined Letter’ the smoky gun that Dupin was looking for, and the presence of the letter herself all together help to form the story structure. However, the minister also assumed or surprised that where the policemen or investigators can search for the letter. So, he hid the letter among the commonplace things. Hence, the story proves a collective importance in the story. Therefore, this is a fact that Poe’s story sets a standard for quality and effectiveness in detective literature. The Purloined Letter’ is a marvellous little tale that the manner which Dupin solves the case, retrieves the letter and presents it to the Prefect is noteworthy. The narrator of Dupin admits that,
“I was astounded. The Prefect appeared absolutely thunder stricken. For some minutes be remained speechless and motionless, looking incredulously at my friend with open mouth, and eyes that seemed started from their sockets; then apparently recovering himself in some measure, he seized a pen, and after several pauses and vacant stones, finally filled and signed a check for fifty thousand fracs, and handed it across the table to Dupin.”
However, the execution of the story base in ‘The Purloined Letter’ only indicates towards a masterwork but a perfect balance happens the story. In ‘The Purloined Letter’, Poe introduced for the first time the element of hiding some information and this process has been used by many other writers in their stories. And hence, Poe finally introduces a balanced story. However, it is clear that, Poe’s influence over Sherlock Holmes falls immensely which we can see latter in the work of Arthur Conan Doyle, ‘A study in Scarlet’, or in ‘A Scandal in Bohemia’. Edgar Allan Poe after writing the series had become a star in the sky of crime fiction.