In Cold Blood Essay

1397 words - 6 pages

SOCY 341 Section 02September 20, 2012In Cold Blood, is a book written by Truman Capote detailing the brutal 1959 murders of Herbert Clutter, a successful farmer from Holcomb, Kansas, his wife, and two of their four children. Herbert Clutter married his college classmate's sister, Bonnie, she is described as "timid, pious, delicate, and is three years younger than him" (pg. 6). Together they had four children, two older daughters who had moved out and Nancy and Kenyon. Herbert's large property, River Valley Farm, keeps him moderately wealthy, he started with little and with time he was able to build up a large successful farm. Herbert is also a community leader, involved with many organizations and he is a gentle man and a strict Methodist. His wife Bonnie on the other hand cannot keep up with his public image as a leader and she withdraws into the home. She suffers from depressive mental disorders and spends a great deal of time in bed. The youngest daughter, Nancy, is "the darling" of the town, a class president and future prom queen. Like her father, she is very organized. Kenyon, Herbert's only son is an awkward fifteen year old who loves to tinker with carpentry and machines.The guys held responsible for the murder of the Clutter family are Perry Smith and Dick Hickock. Perry is a short man, with a large torso but small legs. His legs were badly injured in a motorcycle accident. He wants very much to be educated and he considers himself quite intelligent and artistic. His childhood was lonely and disorganized. His criminal record seems to be a natural extension of the strange environments in which he grew up. Perry's parents' divorced when he was very young and he went to stay with his mother, he tried to run away to his father but was turned away. He ended up in a Catholic orphanage where nurses beat him because he wet the bed. Finally, his father took him in and he finished the third grade which was the last schooling he ever got. Dick Hickock is also a small man, he grew up in Kansas, was married twice, and is jailed for passing bad checks. He is a practical man who exudes confidence and cruelty, but in reality he is not as ruthless or brave as he seems.The investigation team consists of Alvin Dewey, Harold Nye, Roy Church, and Clarence Duntz. Alvin Dewey is an investigator for the Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI), he is the agent responsible for much of western Kansas. In the book he is described as getting very involved in the Clutter case, to the distress of his wife, Marie, and his two small boys. One of Dewey's principal KBI assistants, Harold Nye is the youngest of the group. The oldest of the KBI assistants, Roy Church, is supposedly the fastest drawer in Kansas. And then there is Clarence Dutz, he is also a KBI assistant and is described as a burly man with a broad face. Alvin Dewey is the head of the investigation team and when he approached the scene of the crime ha has no clues, except for a footprint and a missing radio. He...

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