'Internal Conflict In Lamb To The Slaughter'

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The Role and Effect of Internal Conflict Internal conflict can add a lot to a character or story, no matter what the conflict may be. The conflict in a story can deepen the reader's interest and relation to the character and the story itself. In the three short stories the main characters all face different types of internal conflict. The mental struggle against one's own thoughts is something that drives their actions, which may or may not be positive. In the story Lamb to the Slaughter, Mary Maloney must endure the subconscious rivalry she has against her husband. The story takes place in the 1950’s, when the stereotype of a perfect wife, and woman was at its height. Every day Mary grants her husband's every wish, which you can imagine may put some stress on Mary’s brain. Mary's husband initiates conflict when he tells her that he is leaving her, for reasons unknown to the readers. After hearing the news, Mary reacts in a disconcertingly calm manner. Unusually, she still wants to cook for him, even after he has just broke her heart. This can show us that internally, Mary went straight to denial. Not wanting …show more content…

The beginning of the story takes place in a funeral which can say something about the overall tone in the short story. Dave is asked by his friend, a university professor, to present at the school. Dave prepares three weeks in advance, very eager to make his speech perfect. However, Dave has a horrible case of stage fright, and fear of public speaking. Once at the school, he begins his speech, following along carefully, but he ends up reading right from his notes about public speaking, and the speech gets jumbled. During his fright on stage, Dave gets so anxious he feels like his arms are swelling up, and his hands are like “spatula hands”. All in all, Dave didn't really have to get so anxious in the first place, as his speech turned out to be somewhat of a hit with the

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