Analysis Of Truman Capote 's ' Cold Blood '

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In his novel In Cold Blood, Truman Capote writes about the Clutter family murders, which took place in November 1959. Herbert Clutter, Bonnie Clutter, and two of their children (Nancy and Kenyon) are murdered in their Holcomb, Kansas home by Perry Smith and Richard “Dick” Hickock. Capote 's novel, though telling the tale of true events, took on fictional, literary elements, creating a genre of its own: the nonfiction novel. It is through these literary elements that Capote sought for his readers to relate with the two killers, or at least gain a greater understanding of how their minds worked. His characterization of both Perry and Dick is planned carefully throughout the book, and only towards the end does the reader truly get a grasp of their personalities. This withholding – perhaps even manipulation – of information and how Capote presents the information allows him to achieve his purpose for the novel.
Perry Smith is commonly acknowledged as attracting more interest from Capote, and by introducing the readers to Perry first, Capote places him in the front of the readers ' mind. Immediately in Perry 's introduction, the reader finds that he prefers “three aspirin, cold root beer, and a chain of Pall Mall cigarettes” (14), and that he has a large collection of belongings, including “a guitar, and two big boxes of books and maps and songs, poems and old letters” (14). In ordinary journalistic material, the author would not take the time to give such details about a
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