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Compare and contrast The Signalman and A Lamb To The Slaughter

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Compare and contrast The Signalman and A Lamb To The Slaughter A Lamb to the slaughter is based on the relationship of a married couple that we assume are expecting a child. "Her skin...for this was her sixth month with a child" We also assume that her husband Mr Maloney is having an affair. "Of course I'll give you money and see you're looked after. But there isn't needn't really be any fuss. I hope not anyway. It wouldn't be very good for my job." This makes Mr Maloney appear to be very selfish and uncaring towards his wife and his own child. This is Mary Maloney's motive for killing her husband. Her weapon is one she didn't really think about using. It was just happened to be there. It was a frozen leg of lamb, which is later fed to the investigating officers. This is very amusing and is a very interesting twist because it is not something you would expect to happen. ...read more.


When Mr Maloney reveals he is planning to leave his wife we can imagine how devastated she would be because she seams to love him very deeply. Mary Maloney then hits her husband over the head with a frozen leg of lamb and kills him. This is a very interesting use of a weapon because we would not expect it to be used. When Mary Maloney cooks the leg of lamb and feeds it to the police officers is becomes very amusing and seams a very good twist to end the story with. The Signalman is a pre 20th century text, which is written by Charles Dickens. The story is about a signalman who sees a ghost like figure warning him about accidents, which are to occur in the near future at the railway. At the beginning of the story Dickens uses words such as 'shadowed' and 'foreshortened' to create an eerie atmosphere. He also says 'the glow of an angry sunset' the word angry changes the scene hat would have been set by the thought of the sun setting. ...read more.


The Signalman is set outside the rain track whereas A Lamb To The Slaughter is set in Mary Maloney's house. This makes a big difference in the atmosphere set because Mary Maloney's home seams like a warm and comfortable place whereas the Railway line seams cold and deserted. The Characters are very different in the two stories. Mary Maloney is a warm and loving wife who has a nice home and is pregnant whereas the signalman is a hardworking man. We are not told much about his home life. This contrasts to A Lamb to the slaughter where we can see a lot of Mary Maloney's home life. I would have expected the Signalman to be more of a murderer than Mary Maloney because we are told so little about him. Mary Maloney is much more cleaver and quick thinking than the Signalman because she figured out she had to make herself an alibi and did it quickly whereas the signalman couldn't figure out that the ghost was warning him for his own safety. ...read more.

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