Independent Reading Book: In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Truman Capote establishes respect and trust in what he writes from with audience, ethos, through the use of an extensive variety of facts and statistics, logos. Capote uses so many dates, times, and other facts about the crime committed in the book and the subsequent investigation that the reader has to believe what the author is writing. The use of all these facts shows that Capote did his research and he interviewed, questioned, and obtained the opinions of every person that even slightly important to crime itself and the investigation/trial. The author is obviously very meticulous when it comes to dates and times; every important event in the book has a date and sometimes even a time of day to go with it. Some examples of dates included were the day of the murders (November 15th, 1959), dates of when Perry and Dick were here or there (December 31th, 1959- a small restaurant in Texas or noon on December 25th, 1959- beach in Miami Florida), date when the two criminals were apprehended (January 1st, 1960), dates when they were brought from this prison to that one and finally when they were brought to death’s row (April, 1960). Other small facts are also used by the author, like facts about the criminal’s early lives or experiences that they had, which could only have been obtained through extensive interviews with Perry and Dick. The use of all these logos by Capote establishes strong ethos, showing the reader that the author did more than enough research to show that he has the knowledge to write a whole book on the subject.
Capote used pathos in this book mostly to make the reader sad or feel sympathy for a character. In the beginning of the book the author describes all four members of the Clutter family in Holcomb and gives them a decent depth of character. So, when the murders occur, and even in the beginning when the reader knows the book is about a family of four being murdered, the reader feels sad when they die because the author has allowed to reader to get to the know the family and come to see how peaceful and nice they were. Capote also uses pathos to invoke sympathy for the citizens of Holcomb and the Clutter family members; the author provides interviews with these people to show their sadness from losing loved ones and their fear that if such a nice family could be murdered, then anyone could. Capote also describes the feelings of the townspeople, they were afraid for a long time that the killer was among them and could strike again, it invokes feelings of sadness in the reader that such an event could rattle a whole town for a long time. The author does not only invoke sympathy for the innocent people though, Capote also makes (or tries to) the reader feel sorry for Perry. The author develops Perry’s character more than he does with Hickock. Capote conducted extensive interviews with both criminals but in the book he describes Perry’s sad and...