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Pre and Post 20th century novels 'The Creeping Man' and 'Lamb to the Slaughter'.

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Introduction

Pre and Post 20th century novels 'The Creeping Man' and 'Lamb to the Slaughter 'Lamb to the Slaughter and 'The Creeping Man' are two different examples of stories of the detective genre. However one story follows the typical detective genre and the other subverts the traditional detective story. 'The Creeping Man' was written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and is a typical detective story. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was the first and one of the most famous detective writers and in many ways set the trend for detective stories. 'The Creeping Man' is his writing, and thus can be expected to conform to the reader's idea of a traditional detective story. Watson narrates 'The Creeping Man', in order for the reader to get a full understanding of the case. This style also makes the reader see Holmes as clever and mysterious, by only letting the reader know Watson's thoughts on the case and, not on Holmes' view of the case. 'Lamb to the Slaughter' was written by Roal Dahl and subverts from the traditional detective story. It is set in modern times (1980's) and 'plays around' with Doyle's original structure. It also relies on the readers knowledge of the traditional style in order to surprise them. The story is written from Mary Maloney's point of view. ...read more.

Middle

This is portrayed by Watson describing Holmes as having 'flame like intuitions' and being too clever for the 'methodical slowness in' Watson's 'mentality', this therefore suggests that Watson portrays Holmes as too intelligent for his simple mind. In 'The Creeping Man' Professor Presbury is one of the main characters due to his connection with the case and role as a villain. The reader has very little sympathy for him and does not really get to understand him and his thoughts. In one section of the book he is portrayed as animal like, with phrases such as 'a huge bat' and 'sprang up'. He is also portrayed as arrogant, fierce, strange and over reacts on several occasions, this can be seen by his language and style of speech. He says things like 'Hardly enough' to Holmes, which suggests that he is arrogant and he is also described as saying it with a 'screaming voice' and with 'extraordinary malignancy on his face' which portrays him as fierce. This also makes the reader dislike and even fear him and so they have little empathy and sympathy for him. This is the opposite reaction on the reader's part in 'Lamb to the Slaughter' as the reader has a lot of sympathy for the main character and villain, Mary Maloney. ...read more.

Conclusion

This also so portrays him as rude, which in turn makes the reader dislike him. The reader also begins to dislike him when he 'slams the car door' and is described as 'frowning' and 'motionless' as these portray his sinister side. The theme of 'The Creeping Man' is a search for eternal youth, which would have been appropriate for a time where science seemed to hold all the answers. The theme of 'Lamb to the slaughter' is a theme of betrayal and justice, which is a very common theme in detective stories. However this theme is that of natural justice rather than Law and seems to suggest it is superior. 'The Creeping Man' does not contain humour because the intention is not to amuse the reader but to amaze them with Holmes' intelligence. It is also written in the classic detective style and is the standard detective genre. It is written from Watson's point of view, and he narrates to emphasis Holmes' intelligence and so the reader can feel closer to Holmes and what he is thinking, by reading Watson's admiring comments throughout. 'Lamb to the Slaughter' uses humour because as a modern story it can play with the traditional style. Roal Dahl is also known for his humour. It also uses third person narrative, so that Roal Dahl can choose which characters thoughts to focus on. ...read more.

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