Sweet Justice

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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Sweet Justice Have you ever been really mad at a person? Were you mad enough to want to kill that person? What motivates a person to want to kill another human being? In the short story "Killings" by Andre Dubus, Matt Fowler is motivated to take revenge on Richard Strout, who killed his youngest son Frank because he was fooling around with his wife. Matt has so much hatred for Richard that he decides the only way justice will be served is by killing Richard. During the story the author tells us that Matt's motivation is his wife's despair, personal revenge, and the shortcomings of the Massachusetts Legal System. All of these factors push Matt over the edge to commit the crime that he normally would not have done.

Throughout history men have been affected by feelings and emotions of their spouses. A good example of this is the way John Lennon acted after being involved with Yoko Ono.

She is the reason the Beatles disbanded. This is also true in this story. Ruth Fowler affected the actions of her husband, Matt Fowler. Ruth is traumatized at the sight of Richard Strout. The narrator says "[…] Ruth, going about town on errands, kept seeing him. And at nights in bed she would hold Matt and cry, or sometimes she was silent and Matt would touch her tightening arm, her clenched fist" (85). Mrs. Fowler could not bear the sight of Mr. Strout on the streets and Mr. Fowler could not bear to see his wife in so much pain and despair. It would make him very angry to see his wife in that condition. Ruth seemed to be wishing for Matt to kill Richard. Matt like most men like to please their wives so he pleased Ruth by...