Using psychoanalytic theory, it is the primary purpose of this article to frame Edgar Allan Poe's history as an enlisted man in the United States Army. For Poe, these were years of accomplishments as both artist and soldier. When researching this article, two forms of comment are readily detected. Military historians immediately understand the significance in Poe's meteoric rise to sergeant major. But these writers tend not to appreciate the literary history. Literary historians often note that Poe was an enlisted soldier, but, beyond that, seem not to appreciate that information. In none of this is there any sense that Poe sought, and for two years found, a degree of emotional stability. The social structure of the army contained and maintained Poe's psychic structure. This intertwining of the military and the literary, coupled with an understanding of psycho‐social development, is the frame needed to understand Sergeant Major Poe. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
International Journal of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies – Wiley
Published: Dec 1, 2016
Keywords: ; ; ; ;