Characterization of Lamb to the Slaughter by Roal Dahl

Topics: Roald Dahl, Marriage, Fiction, Character / Pages: 3 (646 words) / Published: Oct 29th, 2010
“A calm murder in cold blood” .Roald Dahl’s “Lamb to the DIn "Lamb to the Slaughter", Roald Dahl employs characters and symbolism well to discuss the theme that things are not always what they appear to be.
The story's main character, Mary Maloney, who is a pregnant wife of Patrick Maloney. The Maloney household is located in a large city and the event happened within a day. Mary is a content housewife whose whole life centers around her husband. Patrick arrives home one evening and tells her that he is leaving her. In shock, she begins to prepare a leg of lamb for dinner. When her husband tells her not to bother, she hits him over the head with the frozen leg of lamb. She proceeds to cook the meat and pretends well when in front of her neighbors and the detectives. Then she serves it to the detectives who come to investigate her husband's death.
Mary Maloney is a perfect and devoted house wife, also an expectant mother. She waits happily each night for the arrival of her husband Patrick from work at the police station. But on one Thursday night, she commits an almost perfect murder. The author Roald Dahl has developed the character of Mary Maloney both through direct and indirect characterization. This reveals her character as being dynamic through her words and personality, and is what makes this short story a success.
The first scene is one of a typical house wife longing for her husband to return from work. Everything appears to be too perfect and it was almost as if she was expecting something odd to happen. After her husband Patrick reveals his affliction, Mary's behavior changes from being wife-pleasing-husband to self-observant women who was unstable and quite aggressive. It was almost as if she hits her husband over the head with the leg of lamb naturally, and without hesitation.
She makes intelligent conversation with Sam, the grocery shop owner. She explains to him that Patrick was at home and didn't want to go out that night, leaving her with no

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