Twelve Angry Men

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‘Twelve Angry Men’ shows that personal experience is the strongest factor influencing human decision – making processes. Discuss

Roses play Twelve Angry Men is about a dissenting juror in a murder trial who slowly manages to convince the other jurors that the case they are examining is not as obviously clear as it seemed in court. The defence and the prosecution have rested and the jury is filling into the jury room to decide if a young sixteen year old boy of a minority race is guilty or innocent of murdering his father. It begins as an ‘open and shut’ case of murder, but soon becomes a mini drama of each of the jurors’ prejudices and preconceptions about the trial, the accused, and each other, which every jury room tries to avoid. Prejudices’ and misconceptions are formed through personal experiences which influence human decision making, which is shown throughout the play from all jurors but is distinctively shown through Juror 3.

The 3rd juror is the most outspoken about the 'guilt' of the teenager. As the play goes along it is revealed he has a personal connection with what has happened, he feels anger towards his own son, an anger which he has transferred onto the accused. A key moment for the third juror is when he finally changes his vote to ‘not guilty’ which is when he is reminded by the 8th juror “It’s not your boy. He’s somebody else’”, followed by the 4th juror stating “let him live”. Right up to this point, the third juror was committed to his ‘guilty’ vote. By juror 3 allowing his emotional baggage to enter the jury room with him it is clear that from the beginning of the play, his personal experience with his son were physiologically too powerful for him to be able to make the right verdict for the defendant.

Like the 3rd juror, juror 4, a stock broker who presents his points in a logical way
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