Truman Capote, in his narrative “In Cold Blood”, characterizes Holcomb, Kansas as a dull and trivial town. Capote expresses his views of Holcomb through diction and contrast.
In the passage, Capote’s diction helps the reader to understand his view on Holcomb as being insignificant and boring. Words such as “irrelevant sign”, “haphazard hamlet” and “falling-apart post office” portray Capote’s view on the “lonesome” village. A picture of the irrelevant town is also painted when Capote describes different parts of it; “the streets, unnamed, unshaded, and unpaved” is a good example of his choice of words. Capote also describes the people wearing “rawhide jackets”, “denims”, and “cowboy boots”, showing the small, western town style of the village’s inhabitants. Capote’s diction is an important role in expressing his views about Holcomb, and informing the reader of how unimportant the town is.
Capote’s choice to contrast certain aspects of the town also helps to convey the “aimless congregation” of Holcomb. At first, Holcomb is described as an ordinary town with “flat land”, being somewhat “out there” and its people having an “accent barbed with a prairie twang.” These boring qualities of Holcomb are supported by Capote’s allusions to the “ramshackle mansion”, “one-story frame affairs”, and the “peeling sulphur-colored paint” of the depot. After Capote has built this view of Holcomb, he contrasts the town with an unanticipated outlook on the town. He describes the school as “modern and ably staffed”, the people as “prosperous”, and that Finney County “has done well.” The contrast of different parts of Holcomb make you wonder what other things about Holcomb are you not aware of.
Truman Capote expressed his views of Holcomb to be uneventful and having no significance what so ever. He was able to communicate his views to the reader through his choice of diction and the way he contrasted different features of...