Analysis Of Ray Bradbury's An Utterly Perfect Murder

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The Past Dealt within the Future

In Ray Bradbury’s “An Utterly Perfect Murder”, the author conveys that fear can cause an individual to let the past destroy their conscience and to seek revenge on those who have abused him. To begin, the main character Doug Spaulding expresses his fear that he developed due to the pain he experienced. For instance, Doug states, “we were fine friends needed each other. I to be hit. He to strike. My scars were the emblem and symbol of our love” (1). Here it seems that the author used verbal irony which allows the reader to understand how traumatized the character is. Verbal irony deals with something that is said, however it is meant to be completely different. Doug knows that the permanent marks he has does not have to do with love,
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His thoughts consist of flashbacks such as, “...Ralph knocking me down, rolling me in snow and fresh brown mud. And Ralph laughing and me going home, shamefaced…” (1). Because Doug is always in his mind, as readers we can see that this flashback contributes to indirect characterization. Indirect characterization has to do with reading in between the lines. Clearly, every time Doug discusses a rough experience with himself, it draws him closer to destroying whatever made him that way. Finally, Ralph is the one who drove Doug into making an alarming decision. The story begins with, “It was an utterly perfect, such an incredibly delightful idea for murder…” (1). It seems that Bradbury presented this in the beginning to demonstrate foreshadow. As we read the sentence we can interpret that the main character may be thinking of vengeance. Later, we are able to understand that Doug was speaking about a man who has ruined his life. In conclusion, Ray Bradbury expresses that being afraid causes self damage and the need to take back what was once lost; one can not allow the past to haunt the
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