Violence And Murder In Truman Capote's In Cold Blood

475 Words2 Pages
Sure, the novel is packed with violence and murder. But other than that? Well, In Cold Blood is like the love child of CSI and your Philosophy 101 textbook. It forces us to wonder, who is safe? Whom can you trust? Is there justice? If four God-fearing people in a decent family can be shot and killed for no reason, can that happen to us? Truman Capote doesn't really try to give The Answer to these questions as much as he tries to offer relative answers. He delves into the culture of small-town Kansas and sees the dark side as well as the "Prairie Home Companion" side. He gets inside the minds of two murderers and tries to get them to spill what got them to the point in their lives where they'd just as soon kill ya as look at ya. The 1950s…show more content…
Perry Smith, particularly, never had much of a home at all. He had a chaotic and abusive childhood filled with abandonment and neglect. He envied his partner in crime, Dick Hickock, who at least had parents who cared for him even though they were poor. For Perry and Dick, their close-knit community consisted of other inmates in the prisons where they both spent time. Does that scenario sound familiar? Anyone? Income inequality? Class warfare? Haves and have-nots? If anything, things may have gotten worse since the happy days of the Clutter family in Kansas. And another difference? We know it. We have 24/7 information about what's going on globally, let alone in our own communities. We see what can happen when people want what everyone wants—whether it's democracy or a 50" flat-screen TV—but don't have the hope or means to get it. What fascinated (and scared the crap out of) the readers of In Cold Blood was this idea that none of us is really safe. The town of Holcomb was shattered by the events in the book. It became a lot harder to trust your neighbors and welcome strangers. Still is—and we're not even in Kansas
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