Some Words With A Mummy - Analysis - Satire of Egyptmania

Satire of Egyptmania

Poe is clearly poking fun at Egyptmania in this story. In the story a group of men gather together in the middle of the night to examine a mummy for the sake of "scientific discovery". During their examination they act like a group of children that just got a new toy. They poke and prod the mummy just to see what happens, this is evident when they decide to use electricity. The fact that this is going on at the Doctor's private residence and is attended by his friends only, even though they do not have any kind of medical expertise denotes this fact. Although it seems, in modern times, counterproductive to conduct a serious scientific examination in a party like atmosphere, this was commonly done at the time, a fact that Poe is ridiculing here. The mummy is also a method of ridicule here, right down to its name, Allamistakeo. Unlike serious mummy horror stories, the mummy is not scary, and the characters do not react to it as such. It is another device that Poe uses to censure the reader. Upon its resurrection, the mummy chastises the men for their abuse of himself and mummies in general.

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