Re: RARA-AVIS: Sam Spade's morals

Date: 07 Sep 2005

Michael Robison Wrote Eloquently,

> gone free. Sam is not weighing right and wrong. He
> is weighing what is good for Sam. He is a
> self-serving pragmatist.

I think we have to accept that Sam Spade is pragmatic. Being pragmatic does not preclude being moral.

The scene at the end of Falcon pretty much beats you down with how unwise it would be to trust Brigid. If nothing else there are several dead men in her wake. Handing her over is self defence. It is also the morally right thing to do by conventional standards.

We can argue that his rationalization is his hard cold calculating self in action, or we can argue that this is reasoning he uses to make himself feel better for doing something he would rather not do (i.e. moral fiber).

What we need to clinch it is an example of Sam having a pragmatic choice and a moral choice that require doing different things.


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