Conventional Boundaries In Truman Capote's In Cold Blood

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Passage 2: Page 28-30 Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood challenges the conventional boundaries of the true crime genre and plumbs the psychological and emotional depths of the Clutter family murders. Capote’s masterpiece incorporates diction to create a sympathetic tone and juxtapose the brutality of the murders in which he foreshadows. The included descriptions of Bonnie Clutter evokes sadness or pity from the reader. Capote introduces Bonnie Clutter in such a way the readers might assume she is a mentally unstable woman that remains bedridden and miserable. Bonnie suffers spells of postpartum depression after the births of her four children, and she worries about her children remembering her “as a kind of ghost” (30). Capote describes Bonnie’s room in a way that it is symbolic of her depression, which draws readers to feel sympathetic toward her. Capote starts with, “The room she so seldom left was austere…” and continues to portray her room as “impersonal,” to the point “a visitor might have thought it permanently unoccupied” (29, 30). The impersonal qualities of her room …show more content…

Capote indicates that Mrs. Clutter will not survive “ …this final day of her life…” (30). The included description of Bonnie’s pure white nightgown foreshadows the brutality of the murders, as Capote describes how soiled it is after she is shot. The contrast of Bonnie freezing, to her room being stifling also dramatizes the murder that will later take place in her bedroom. When Wilma Kidwell opens Bonnie’s bedroom door, “the heat gathered inside...” but Bonnie was “freezing” (29). Capote also includes a description of Bonnie’s beside table stating that there is only a Bible, and it ironically opened to the admonition, “Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is.” This description foreshadows the impending events of that night and is ironic to the Clutter family’s

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