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The Destructors Vs. The Most Dangerous Game

1398 words - 6 pages

In short fiction stories, the main ideas that the author is trying to communicate are conveyed through the use of developing elements such the setting and characterization. Specifically, these two elements of short story fiction are particularly fascinating and extremely effective in communicating the true “meat” of the stories and communicating the big picture and point of the story. In reading “The Destructors” by Graham Greene and also “The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell, the use of setting and characterization truly enhance the stories to a point to where the reader truly understands the deeper meaning behind the stories. Although these stories are completely different in ...view middle of the document...

We then get an inside look at one of the gang’s meetings and we see that with no real approval from the group, the new member named “T” is taking lead of the weak minded in the group and becoming the new alpha male. The completely destructed setting creates a picture of brokenness and the product of chaos and is a symbol in itself of destruction. Clearly the setting has a depressing and negative effect on the gang and also “Old Misery”, the old man who owned the leaning house. With such a broken setting the reader is prepared for even more brokenness and more specifically destruction.
In the same manner of “The Destructors”, the setting of “The Most Dangerous Game” is masterfully created. The opening sentence makes the reader want to know more and keep reading the story. “Off there to the right, there’s a large island…It’s rather a mystery”. We see that the two men are on their way to a Jaguar hunt, and are on a yacht in the middle of the night. The conversation that is heard between Whitney and Rainsford reveals the entire meaning of the story. Whitney states that the hunted Jaguars must experience real fear while Rainsford denies this idea and enjoys mindless hunting. The creepiness of the setting begins when the name of the mysterious island is revealed to be called “the ship trap” according to “the old maps”. The reality of a possible incident begins to set in when Connell writes, “But even you can’t see four miles on a moonless Caribbean night.” The protagonist “Rainsford” then adds, “Nor four yards. Ugh, it’s like moist black velvet”. With the darkness so thick like black velvet, the setting is symbolic of evil, the unknown and fear. It is not only symbolic, but also seemingly real. Any person who has spent time on the water at night knows the eeriness that can intrude when darkness shrouds visibility. Once Rainsford falls off the boat and makes his way onto the island, traverses through the jungle and arrives at the compound of antagonist General Zaroff, the setting changes from mysterious and eerie to dark and ominous. This setting symbolizes the fear that this story is based upon. While this setting is seemingly real, there is a fantasy-like element that is present. I think Connell uses this fantasy like setting on the island to focus on the meaning of the story rather than to depict it as a real place.
The characterization that is present in “the Destructors” is tremendously used to depict the meaning of the story. We see the two primary member’s of the gang, Blackie and T. Blackie is the leader of the group and is not a nice kid. When Old Misery tries to offer Blackie some chocolates, he sees it as an act of bribery to get the gang to stop bouncing balls off the side of his house. He then gathers the gang to bounce the ball all morning one day, and only does this to show that the gang does what they want, when they want and simply out of spite. “T” is said to have had “every...

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