as difficult with her, because I didn’t want to kill her, that was the last thing I wanted.
As already mentioned, Clegg uses chloroform and CTC as an anaesthetic both when he kills butterflies and when he kidnaps Miranda, but as he says, you have to “nip the thorax” if you do not have a killing-bottle. In a way, this is what he does when he refuses to give Miranda the proper medicine to cure her pneumonia. The ability to support the body with oxygen is prevented both when the thorax is “nipped” and when pneumonia is left untreated.
He realises the class difference between him and Miranda, and its significance, but not until just before Miranda dies: “There was always class between us” (41). Because of his lower class background, Clegg cannot truly consider himself as someone moving upwards in society after he has won the money. His loathing of upper class behaviour is too firmly rooted in his mind.
The novel's prominent themes of class and collection also begin to appear in these sections of The Collector. Differences in class will always stand between Miranda and Clegg: "There was always class between us," Clegg reflects (41). Miranda does not think she is a snob, yet Clegg accuses her of being an elitist and maintains that Miranda would never have taken notice of him in London. Miranda also becomes aware of how well she fits into Clegg's obsession with collection: "Now you've collected me," she says (44). Both these themes are crucial to the psychological warfare that will be waged between the two characters throughout the rest of the novel.
Miranda Grey and Frederick Clegg are the main characters that are interpreted in the text The Collector, by John Fowles. Both characters correspond to different classes in society. John Fowles uses the concept of the implied reader, in which he 'speaks to' a specific reader in mind in an attempt to have the story interpreted in a particular way. Fowles expects us to read Miranda as an intelligent, mentally independent being part of the upper class, but at the same time, an arrogant "...liberal humanist snob" (Radhakrishna Rao, www.freshlimesoda.com/reviews/thecollector.html). The use and lack of several literary techniques, point of view, allusion, and Heraclitian philosophies encourages this intended response I hold towards Miranda. Fowles' various writing techniques promoted the interpretation that Clegg is part of the lower class and as a result is a victim of the mind, unable to expand his thoughts or feelings. It is because of this that he finds it hard to see between what is morally correct, and what is not accepted. I found it difficult to respond to his character due to the fact that the protagonist in most novels is one easy to identify with, unlike the motives of Frederick Clegg. Fowles' uses several literary techniques to enhance the proposed analysis of Clegg. The first insights to Clegg's mental restrictions.
‘I want to know you very much.’ – There is obviously a clear obsession that Frederick has for Miranda. It is obvious that Friedrick has a clear obsession for Miranda. Fredrick wants to know her ‘very much’. The adverb ;much’ is used deliberately by Fowles. It is clear to the reader that ‘much’ makes the sentence grammatically incorrect, and one would expect ‘well’ instead. Fowles uses ‘much’ as it is quantitated. Fredireck .
I wouldn't have a chance in London. I'm not clever and all that. Not your class. You wouldn't be seen dead with me in London. "That's not fair. I'm not a snob. I hate snobs. I don't pre-judge people." I'm not blaming you, I said. "I hate snobbism." She was quite violent. She had a way of saying some words very strong, very emphatic. "Some of my best friends in London are -- well, what some people call working class. In origin. We just don't think about it." Like Peter Catesby, I said. (That was the young man with the sports car's name.) "Him! I haven't seen him for months. He's just a middle-class suburban oaf." I could still see her climbing into his flashy M.G. I didn't know whether to trust her. "I suppose it's in all the papers." I haven't looked. "You might go to prison for years." Be worth it. Be worth going for life, I said. "I promise, I swear that if you let me go I will not tell anyone. I'll tell them all some story. I will arrange to meet you as often as you like, as often as I can when I'm not working. Nobody will ever know about this except us." I can't, I said. Not now. I felt like a cruel king, her appealing like she did. "If you let me go now I shall begin to admire you. I shall think, he had me at his mercy, but he was chivalrous, he behaved like a real gentleman." I can't, I said. Don't ask. Please don't ask. "I should think, someone like that must be worth knowing." She sat perched there, watching me. I've got to go now, I said. I went out so fast I fell over the top step. She got off the drawers and stood looking up at me in the door with a strange expression. "Please," she said. Very gently and nicely. It was difficult to resist. It was like not having a net and catching a specimen you wanted in your first and second fingers (I was always very clever at that), coming up slowly behind and you had it, but you had to nip the thorax, and it would be quivering there. It wasn't easy like it was with a killing-bottle. And it was twice as difficult with her, because I didn't want to kill her, that was the last thing I wanted.