Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive


Support for PBS LearningMedia resources provided by Susan Jaffe Tane.

  • Gothic Tales | Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive

    Explore the terror of gothic tales in this video from the American Masters film, Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. Poe’s legacy centers on his horror stories and his ability to tap into the fears of his readers, like the fear of being buried alive. Engage students through discussion questions and teaching tips that ask them to explore why some literature is timeless, analyze the tales featured in the video, and to create their own dramatic reading of a famous Poe story.

    Please note that this video includes disturbing imagery that may be unsuitable for young viewers.

    Grades: 6-12
  • "The Raven" | Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive

    Nevermore, Lenore! Learn about the story behind Poe’s famous poem, “The Raven,” in this video from the American Masters film Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. Check out the support materials for discussion questions, teaching tips, and handouts that provide a variety of fun ways to share the poem with students. Through an analysis of mood, alliteration, diction, and imagery, students unpack the meaning of Poe’s poem and learn more about one of the most elusive writers in American literature.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Art of the Short Story | Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive

    Learn about the rise of mass media and the popularity of the short story in this video from the American Masters film Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. Poe wrote more than seventy short stories and created his own set of rules for the genre. He is also credited as one of the first literary critics of American literature and the creator of detective fiction. Engage students with discussion questions, teaching tips, and a handout for the study of Poe’s opening sentences, his way of grabbing the attention of readers.

    Grades: 6-12
  • "The Tell-Tale Heart" | Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive

    Explore Edgar Allan Poe’s famous short story, “The Tell-Tale Heart,“ in this video from the American Masters film Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. Discussion questions, teaching tips, and a student handout ask students to analyze the work while also learning more about the art of writing a short story. Students are asked to consider why the story remains popular today, connections to music, and how Poe hooks readers from the very first sentence.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Fake News and Biography | Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive

    Learn about the “fake news” that established long held beliefs about Edgar Allan Poe in this video from American Masters, Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. When Edgar Allan Poe died under mysterious circumstances, his literary rival, Rufus W. Griswold, wrote a high-profile obituary filled with falsehoods that cast him as a lunatic and a madman. Engage students with a background essay, discussion questions, teaching tips, and handout as they explore the mystery behind his death and how fiction can sometimes become accepted as truth.

    Grades: 6-12
  • Lord Byron, Poe, and Poetry | Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive

    Explore the literature of Edgar Allan Poe, Lord Byron, and “the most poetical topic in the world” in this series of videos from the American Masters film, Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. Discussion questions, teaching tips, and a student handout ask students to analyze poetry, compare Byron and Poe, and explore the impact of death on early 19th century literature and culture.

    Please note that this video includes photographs of dead people, a culturally accepted practice to honor loved ones during the 19th century.

    Grades: 6-12

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