Essay on Alias Grace: Innocent or Guilty?

Essay on Alias Grace: Innocent or Guilty?

Length: 1103 words (3.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Innocent or Guilty?

     Grace Marks, the main character in Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood, is undoubtedly guilty. The evidence against her is way too much to consider innocence. Feeling sympathy towards Grace seems easy, especially since she tries to make it out to seem that she is the victim, but when looking at the facts only, it is obvious that the evidence all points against her. She has motives, Grace has left evidence, and her stories are not consistent with each other. The evidence, as well as the motives signify her guilt, not her being a victim of an unfair system.
     Grace’s motives seem to be fairly simple, as they are based mostly on a love interest of Mr. Kinnear. Mr. Kinnear’s love interest is Nancy Montgomery, who Grace absolutely despises. This hatred has more to do than the fact that Nancy involved herself with Thomas Kinnear, but also because Grace considers her to have multiple personalities, signified by her alias Mary Whitney, and she hates that she is not blessed with the same social standing and wealth that Nancy Montgomery has reached. It is not just a crush for Grace, especially since there are signals that Mr. Kinnear has interest in Grace as well. The easiest solution for her to obtain his love would be to kill Nancy. Kinnear’s interest in Grace is shown when he takes time out of his day to make small talk with Grace. The best signal of Mr. Kinnear’s interest in Grace, however, would be when he asked her to go out on her birthday. Mr. Kinnear’s sly flirting, however, only increases Grace’s desire to be with him, and this will lead to his eventual death. The feelings are not one sided, as they are reciprocated by Grace based on her going out of her way to do things, for example delivering coffee to Mr. Kinnear, that make Nancy angry. Due to the time period, the idea of a mistress, and being born by anyone other than one’s wife is extremely unacceptable, and when Grace finds out Nancy is pregnant, she has another motive for killing her. A marriage between Nancy and Mr. Kinnear would appear imminent if she were to have his baby. Grace will not allow this to happen, and therefore she puts an end to any chance of it occurring by murdering Nancy and Mr. Kinnear.
     In addition to having motives, Grace has done a poor job of covering up the murder, and can ...

... middle of paper ...

...he seemed to be unfazed by it unless you had a part in the death, which Grace obviously did. Her lack of consistency in recounting what had happened casts doubt upon her honesty and character. How can it be believed when Grace changes her story to fit her needs? They cannot, and therefore she is guilty.

     Grace Marks is a murderess, not a victim. The events that unfolded clearly she her guilt, and all the evidence points against her. It is hard to think anyone else besides McDermott and Grace performed the sinful murders, especially considering that both of their motives were based on love. I am of the opinion that Margaret Atwood is trying to show that people will do crazy things for love, even though that is not one of the main underlying themes in the book. Grace’s desire for Mr. Kinnear’s affection, as well as her other motives led her to commit the crime. The evidence left behind, as well as the evidence in how Grace conducted herself after the crime help prove her guilt, and her dishonest storytelling takes away all doubt of her guilt. She is a cold blooded murderess who let feelings get in the way of morals, and she should be charged as so.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Alias Grace Essay

- Alias Grace                 Based on a notorious double murder in Canada in the1840's, the novel Alias Grace tells the story of a pretty 16 year-old servant girl who conspired with a ranch hand to kill their employer and his mistress and escape with their belongings. They were captured in several days, and later, in a much-publicized trial, found guilty of premeditated murder. The young man, James McDermott, was sentenced to death, and the girl, Grace Marks, narrowly escaped it. Alias Grace begins after the murderess has served 8 years in prison.  The death of Nancy Montgomery, Kinnear's housekeeper and mistress, has been disregarded as both villains had already been sentenced to de...   [tags: Alias Grace]

Free Essays
1332 words (3.8 pages)

Grace Mark is Guilty in "Alias Grace" Essay

- Based on a horrible murder in 1843 in Canada, the novel " Alias Grace" tells the story of a young Irish-born servant girl who plans to kill her employer and his mistress. It is a very horrifying tragedy. An analysis of Grace Mark's behavior reveals many things. Her actions in the novel show that she is guilty of the murders of Thomas Kinnear and Nancy Montgomery. She plans with a man named James McDermott, hired help, to kill the love of her life and the mistress he is seeing. Alias Grace begins after a Grace has served eight years in prison....   [tags: Book Reviews]

Strong Essays
859 words (2.5 pages)

Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace Essay

- Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace Margaret Atwood was born on November 18, 1939 in Ottawa, Ontario, and since then she has lived in various places such as Boston, London, France, Italy, Germany, and Alabama. She currently resides in Toronto. Atwood has written numerous poems, novels, short stories, children’s books, magazine articles, and works of nonfiction. She has also written three television scripts, and she has edited anthologies. Some of her well-known novels include The Handmaid’s Tale, Cat’s Eye, The Robber Bride, and Alias Grace ("Atwood")....   [tags: Literary]

Strong Essays
1190 words (3.4 pages)

An Essay Concerning Alias Grace As A Major Piece Of Literature

- The book Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood is a beautifully articulated work of literature. The book presents a Victorian mode spiced up with spooky plot twists. Although the book presents a Victorian mode it is not entirely comprised of Romantic ideals. Atwood is a modern writer who was influenced by the major paradigms of both American and Canadian history. Since she was a child, she was fascinated by the true story of Grace Marks. Grace Marks was a teenage, Canadian domestic worker of the nineteenth century who was convicted upon the murder of her employer (Thomas Kinnear) and his mistress (Nancy Montgomery)....   [tags: essays research papers]

Strong Essays
1157 words (3.3 pages)

Atwood's Framing of the Story in "Alias Grace" Essay

- One of the main themes of the postmodern movement includes the idea that history is only what one makes of it. In other words, to the postmodern philosopher history is only a story humans frame and create about their past (Bruzina). Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace is an excellent exploration of this postmodern idea. Through use of postmodern writing styles and techniques, Atwood explores how the framing of a story influences its meaning. By mixing different writing mediums such as prose, poetry, period style letters, and historical documents such as newspaper articles, Atwood achieves a complex novel that explores a moment of history in a unique way....   [tags: Alias Grace, Margaret Atwood, ]

Strong Essays
1878 words (5.4 pages)

Essay about Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace

- Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace Alias Grace is the most recent novel by Margaret Atwood, Canada’s most prominent modern novelist. The novel is, as Atwood writes in her afterword, ‘a work of fiction, although it is based on reality’(538) centred on the case of Victorian Canada’s most celebrated murderess, Grace Marks, an immigrant Irish servant girl. The manner in which Atwood imaginatively reconfigures historical fact in order to create a subversive text which ‘writes back’ to both the journals of a Canadian literary ancestor, and to Canada’s nineteenth century self -image, illustrates what critic Linda Hutcheon has called ‘the use of irony as a powerful subversive rule in the rethinking and...   [tags: Margaret Atwood Alias Grace Essays]

Strong Essays
1661 words (4.7 pages)

Essay on Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood

- Margaret Atwood’s novel, Alias Grace, nominated for the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Novel, depicts a young 16 year old girl who is found guilty of murdering her employer and his lover in conspiracy with James McDerrmott. James McDermott is put to death by hanging, but Grace is brought to prison because she is of the “weaker sex.” This is a reflection of the construction of femininity and masculinity of the mid and late nineteenth century. A social issue of the Victorian age was women being treated as subordinate to men....   [tags: victorian era, subordinate women]

Strong Essays
1338 words (3.8 pages)

Essay on Alias Grace, by Margaret Atwood

- Set in the Victorian era where women remained at the bottom of the social and economic ladder, Alias Grace's female characters emerged out of the stereotypes of its time. Not only were they unique and extremely dynamic but Margaret Atwood's characters stood for more than just the unconventional women of such a society. They were strong and able women who overcome the traumas in their lives. They chose not to be labelled by impressions of the ideal women rather they made their own mark in society....   [tags: victorian era]

Strong Essays
890 words (2.5 pages)

Overview: Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood Essay

- Margaret Atwood’s novel Alias Grace is a work of historical fiction that has drawn upon several historical sources. As Atwood states these sources are often contradictory to each other and their creators have their own motives and biases in producing them. Atwood uses these contradictory versions of the same events very cleverly to underline the fact that the truth of Grace Marks’ guilt or innocence is no clearer now then it was at the time of her conviction. The novel also provides an interesting look at the historical records of women from different classes and circumstances....   [tags: lower class women, fiction]

Strong Essays
1441 words (4.1 pages)

The Apology of Socrates: Guilty or Innocent? Essay

- The Apology of Socrates: Guilty or Innocent.    In any case of law, when considering truth and justice, one must first look at the validity of the court and the system itself.  In Socrates' case, the situation is no different.  One may be said to be guilty or innocent of any crime, but guilt or innocence is only as valid as the court it is subjected to.  Therefore, in considering whether Socrates is guilty or not, it must be kept in mind the norms and standards of Athens at that time, and the validity of his accusers and the crimes he allegedly committed.  Is Socrates guilty or innocent of his accusations?            What exactly is Socrates being accused of?  "Socrates is guilty of engag...   [tags: Philosophy essays]

Strong Essays
943 words (2.7 pages)