Primarily, “Killings” concerns a crime and its consequences. The lead character, Matt Fowler goes one step too far and identifies with the evil that tragically marred his life-the murder of his son. Matt and his friend Willis Trottier executed Richard Strout, the man who killed his son. This murder was more of a private revenge than of protection but the character’s act was partially motivated by his wish to protect his wife who suffered every time she encounters their son’s murderer ( & , 2000, ). As Dubus wrote, “Ruth can’t even go out for cigarettes and aspirin....She sees him all the time. It makes her cry” ( ). While it is obviously too late to protect his son, Fowler experiences his son’s murder as an assault on his fatherhood and on his wish to protect his children. Matt could no longer tolerate watching his wife deteriorate before his eyes simply because she cannot cope with the loss of their son. Finally, he decided to bring grief resolution to both of them by killing Strout.
Fowler is extremely saddened by his act. In the story, Strout, the man who is shot, is clearly guilty but he is also a human being and that knowledge was suppressed by Fowler to kill him. At the end of the story...
... middle of paper ...
...wler was ironic in nature. He depicts anger by avenging his son’s death but ended up with self death as a result of his own crime.
Matt committed a kind of self murder by killing Strout. He is the judge, jury and the executioner which invites the readers to feel the anger and righteousness of the character. It also makes the readers think whether the cleanly executed revenge murder is morally justified. Even though his son’s murderer admits his guilt and is sentenced for his crime, the character’s fixation on revenge identifies him with a dark side of the murderous revenge.
The story concludes not only with two physical killings but the moral death of the character as well. The character was apt to take the law into his own hand to avenge and protect his family. There is no abstract moral judgment but it is clear that the psychic price of the action comes high.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- “We all know the civilized way to wreak revenge: You don’t. You rise above it. Francis Bacon saw this nearly 400 years ago,” said Susie Boyt (Boyt 2014). This isn’t always the case though and there are individuals in the world such as myself that believe differently. There are three types of revenge crimes that happen. There are silly childish forms of revenge such as tattling on a friend to a teacher. Another is a passion crime, a murder when the emotional stress becomes too much and a person snaps.... [tags: revenge, crime]
1507 words (4.3 pages)
- “Killings", written by Andre Dubus in 1979, involves several aspects such as revenge, morality, and murder. Elements, such as the story’s title, the order of events, and the development of the characters, are very unique. It successfully evokes emotion and suspense as the plot unfolds in sequence. Though it seems easily overlooked, the title “Killings” is very important due to the fact that the thrill of suspense is left in the mind of the reader. The title encourages readers to question who and what.... [tags: Essay on Killings, Andre Dubus ]
753 words (2.2 pages)
- Andre Dubus’s “Killings” is a very interesting look into the psychology that goes on after a person has been killed. The story discusses the ramifications of the original murder, the subsequent actions of “justice,” and finally what is left when it is all said and done. Dubus’s “Killings” is a very clear example of how one family deals with the death of their youngest son. The entire story is written in a very disconnected method. Throughout the entire story Dubus never takes a side, never shows emotion or empathy towards anything.... [tags: Killings Andre Dubus]
975 words (2.8 pages)
- The use of contrast helps portray the concepts of morality and revenge in William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”. The foil between characters further develops the concepts and characterization, providing an additional layer of meaning behind the play. Contrast can mainly be observed between Hamlet and Claudius, and Hamlet and Fortinbras. The contrasted characters mentioned play a major part in developing a main theme throughout the play, that being moral corruption. Moral corruption can be seen through the state of Denmark as a whole, as well as simply in the family unit Hamlet is exposed to.... [tags: contradictions, corruption, murder]
1156 words (3.3 pages)
- The death penalty has many supporters and opposes and i would have to say i am one of the opposes because whether they did or didn 't comment the crime . I don 't think it gives us as the people of the united states the right to kill a Man or Woman that does the horrific Crime . I mean don 't get wrong i am a true believer that everyone person is responsible for their actions and that justice needs to be taken. I believe most people think that if they get justice for their loved ones it would solve everything it may for the few minutes.... [tags: Capital punishment, Crime, Murder, Prison]
701 words (2 pages)
- ... Also, not being able to move on and receive closure and feeling as if the law had failed to execute justice, Fowler is pushed not only by his wife’s prodding but also his love for his son to seek his own version of justice; which is ultimately revenge. With the help of his best friend Trottier, Fowler was able to plan out a seemingly flawless murder. Both men tend to work late nights; Trottier was a bartender, so Fowler meeting with him after hours was an easy alibi. The hardest part was getting Strout to a secluded place, which they were able to do by conning him at first, saying they had bought him a plane ticket and wanted him out of their lives so that everyone could move on.... [tags: murder, revenge, family ]
888 words (2.5 pages)
- This examination will look at the short story “Killings” by Andre Dubus and the main characters in the story. The story begins on a warm August day with the burial of Matt and Ruth Fowler’s youngest son Frank. Frank’s age: “twenty-one years, eight months, and four days” (Dubus 107). Attending the funeral were Matt, his wife Ruth, their adult children and spouses. Matt’s family is extremely distraught over the murder of their youngest son/brother, in their own way. There are implications of wanting to kill Richard Strout, the guy accused of being the murderer: “I should kill him” (107), as stated after the service.... [tags: Literary Analysis ]
1035 words (3 pages)
- The Killings by Andre Dubus Plot is defined as, "the authors arrangement of incidents in a story it is the organizing principle that controls the controls the order of events (Meyer,64)." The element of plot is heavily relied on in the short story, "The Killings" by Andre Dubus. The plot which is completely made inside the imagination of an author (Meyer,64), gives the audience important insight to people, places, and events in the story (Meyer,64) . "The Killings" provides a somewhat conventional plot pattern, where the character is confronted with a problem and is then led into a climax, which late leads to the resolution of the story (Meyer,65).... [tags: Killings Andre Dubus]
1037 words (3 pages)
- In this study of revenge and revengers in two Elizabethan revenge tragedies the two plays I shall look at are Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, and The Revenger's Tragedy, by Thomas Middleton. I shall look first at the playwrights' handling of the characters of the revengers, and then at the treatment of the revengers by other characters in the plays. Although having similarities in their underlying themes, and in their adherence to conventions, these two plays present contrasting pictures of the figure of the revenger; Hamlet offering a far more complex treatment of its main character, and The Revenger's Tragedy appearing, in comparison, limited by the author's social message, and lacking... [tags: Elizabethan Revenge Tragedies]
3225 words (9.2 pages)
- Comparing Hamlet by William Shakespeare and The Killings by Andre Dubus Losing a loved one to tragedy, especially two most brutal and malicious tragedies as these, will torture the minds of any and all men. Terrifying thoughts, even carefully planned acts of revenge will plow themselves into your brain. It is how we react to these situations that can and will forever define that man, his life, and his actions. In these two stories, Hamlet's father and Matt Fowler's son are murdered with jealous motives of romance, ambition, betrayal and rage.... [tags: Hamlet Killings Love Tragedies Essays]
843 words (2.4 pages)