“Lamb to the Slaughter” is a short story written by Roald Dahl in 1953. The story begins with Mary waiting all day for her husband to return home and when he does, Patrick tells Mary he wants to leave her for no apparent reason. This was shocking news to Mary so she first continued to prepare dinner for Patrick before she realizes that the lamb she was preparing would be the perfect instrument to kill Patrick with. She then walks up to Patrick and hits him on the head which kills him instantly.
The pictures I’ve chosen to include in my Pinterest board emphasize the theme of underestimation and a superior male position. Mary is portrayed as innocent and a typical housewife but we soon realize her actions are very ironic and are not like her character. Restricted housewives like Mary are suppose to look up to their husband and respect their decisions. When Patrick tells Mary he’s leaving the relationship, he expected her to have no reaction although he knows she is pregnant and hormonal and underestimated her abilities.
The lamb Mary kills Patrick is an honest and harmless item but is used in a malicious way. The dark humor in the short story is interactive and intrigues the reader. For example, the statement, “Probably right under our very noses, What you think, Jack?” (Dahl) is a humorous statement because the investigators were eating the murder weapon.
Several people learn visually so by demonstrating key points through pictures, it gives a reader is a different perspective of the theme. Instead of analyzing the theme closely, the images provide a collective theme and a basis for the reader to dig deeper on their own.
Dahl, Roald. Lamb to the Slaughter. New York: Harper’s Magazine, 1953. Short Story.