And Then There Were None Essay Test

Agatha Christie examines the psychology of the island’s guests, as each deteriorates under the pressure of guilt and grave danger. At first, the guests hide their guilt not only from others but also from themselves. This is possible because their crimes are perceived as accidental and unintentional; a number are also passive-aggressive. Vera Claythorne, General MacArthur, Mr. Blore, Emily Brent, Mr. and Mrs. Rogers, and Philip Lombard all deny any active agency in the deaths they are said to have caused. Instead, each could be said to have betrayed a trust by failing to act. For instance, Vera failed to stop the boy she looked after from swimming too far from shore; Mr. and Mrs. Rogers withheld needed medication; Emily Brent failed to demonstrate compassion for her maidservant; Mr. Blore and General Macarthur hid their crime under the rubric of duty.

While these characters maintain a show of innocence, however, their guilt emerges less consciously, through dreams or memories that undermine their self-assurance and certainty. Thoughts of their victims trouble a number of the guests. Emily feels haunted by the spirit of her servant; for Vera, the smell of the sea seems to summon the spirit of the drowned boy. These episodes point to the way in which guilt, even if denied by the rational faculties, can make its presence felt in other ways. Vera is tormented by her unbidden fantasies and memories to such an extent that she is no longer in her right mind by novel’s end. She readily cooperates with the suggestion of the nursery rhyme, hanging herself on the noose the judge has provided.

Related to the psychology of the guilty is the theme of exposure. The isolated island mansion is modern, flooded with light, indicating a venue in which all will be revealed. Each guest exposes a side far from rational and decent. Bestial metaphors suggest that, under duress, each has reverted to a primitive law of the jungle, participating in a war of all against all. This disturbing Darwinist vision is first articulated by Philip Lombard as a justification for his crime, but as the characters are reduced to their instincts for...

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Essay on And Then There Were None by Agatha Chrisitie

1097 Words5 Pages

1. Everyone on the island begins to lose their minds once people begin to die. For example, General McArthur begins to speak to Vera about, “waiting for the end” (pg. 81) and, “No one is leaving the island” (pg. 82) once Anthony Marston and Mrs. Rogers die. He is coping with the terror by trying not to care, and thinking about his dead wife Leslie. However, he is finally killed when sitting alone, watching the waves. His death causes even more chaos and terror among the remaining seven. Dr. Armstrong does not cope well either, and “breaks out into nervous torrents of speech” (pg. 136) and was a “pitiable condition of nerves” (pg. 136) until he was finally killed. He is pushed off a cliff and drowns.

2. Because this was a mystery novel,…show more content…

1. Everyone on the island begins to lose their minds once people begin to die. For example, General McArthur begins to speak to Vera about, “waiting for the end” (pg. 81) and, “No one is leaving the island” (pg. 82) once Anthony Marston and Mrs. Rogers die. He is coping with the terror by trying not to care, and thinking about his dead wife Leslie. However, he is finally killed when sitting alone, watching the waves. His death causes even more chaos and terror among the remaining seven. Dr. Armstrong does not cope well either, and “breaks out into nervous torrents of speech” (pg. 136) and was a “pitiable condition of nerves” (pg. 136) until he was finally killed. He is pushed off a cliff and drowns.

2. Because this was a mystery novel, foreshadowing was very heavily used in the book. Foreshadowing is very useful in a mystery novel, because a mystery novel is all about suspense, and foreshadowing is a great tool to increase the suspense. One of the biggest foreshadows was the “big black hook” (pg. 148) on the ceiling of Vera’s room, which she will eventually use to kill herself. However, there were other examples of foreshadowing, including Vera’s first sight of Indian Island. She concludes it looks sinister (pg.16), and that hints at the troubles to come. Theres also the old man on the train that tells Blore that “his day of judgement is close at hand” (pg.11), which hints that Blore will soon die. And there's the very obvious “10 little indians poem” (pg. 22) which

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