Re: RARA-AVIS: Southwestern: Cormac McCarthy

From: Michael Robison (
Date: 05 Apr 2004

Brian wrote:

"The Judge" may be the most harrowing literary character since Hannibal Lecter, and reads like a cross between that arch-fiend and Captain Ahab.

*************** I like the connection between The Judge and Lecter, Brian. They both fit a special niche in the character category under the heading of genius murderers. There are some common themes that follow these guys around. One would be the Nietzschean contrast between master and slave philosophy. These guys fully understand that what they do is considered evil by convention, but they consider themselves above convention. Their crimes are often disassociated from emotions like greed and hate, feelings they are likely to consider irrational and below them. Another theme would be where the line is drawn between genius and insanity. Another inevitable theme is an examination of conventional concepts of right and wrong, and if right and wrong are absolute or relative.

I like all these issues, so I've got a fondness for the genius killer in literature. You guys got any other good examples of the genius killer? I'll name one more of my favorites before I go: Mr. Kurtz, from Conrad's HEART OF DARKNESS.


__________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Small Business $15K Web Design Giveaway

# Plain ASCII text only, please.  Anything else won't show up.
# To unsubscribe from the regular list, say "unsubscribe rara-avis" to
#  This will not work for the digest version.
# The web pages for the list are at .

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 05 Apr 2004 EDT