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Cannibalism in the Cars

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Zane Oligee

on 4 February 2015

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Transcript of Cannibalism in the Cars

Mark Twain was born on November 30th, 1835 as Samuel Langhorne Clemens.
Twain was born in Florida, Missouri as the sixth child to John and Jane Clemens.

Mark Twain
Rising Action
The snow began to fall faster and the wind blew harder. The train soon began to flag and slow as it pushed through the snow. Everyone began to get concerned. Around 2 a.m. everyone was called outside to help shovel the snow. It was a domed effort. They soon gave up and sat down to wait out the storm. The days soon slid by. Every day the men grew hungrier and hungrier.
By: Mark Twain
Cannibalism in the Cars
Presentation by: Danielle Tucker, Chase Washburn, Zane Oligee

Falling Action
Quote 1
Quote 2
Quote 3
Quote 4
Quote 5
When Twain was four years old he and his family moved to the town of Hannibal.
In 1847 his father died unexpectedly, and his mother assumed control of the household. After his father’s death the family suffered many years of economic struggle.
Up until Twain was twelve years old he attended school, but after his fathers death he found employment as an apprentice printer at the Hannibal Courier where he was paid with rations of food.
In 1851 he got a job as a printer and occasional writer and editor at the Hannibal Western Union, a little newspaper owned by his brother, Orion.
By 1859 Twain was a licensed pilot of a steamboat, one dream he’s wished to fulfill, as he found regular employment by work on the shoals and channels of the Mississippi River.

Twain married 24-year-old Olivia (Livy) Langdon in February of 1870.
In December 1884, one of Twain’s most famous works, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, was first published.
In June of 1904 Livy died while Twain traveling after she had suffered a long illness.
Twain died on April 21st, 1910 at the age of 74.

This story takes place in a train station in St. Louis.
The primary story is a sub story in this narrative, being told by a stranger to a man sitting next to him.

Protagonist (Narrator)- The protagonist in the story is the man telling the story of his entombed in a snow covered train.
Protagonist- There is a second protagonist, the man that listens to this terrifying story.
Antagonist- The main antagonist of this story is the hunger that drives the men to eating their own.

This story is told in two different points of first person.
The main story is told from the narrators personal experience
While the second point is from the stranger telling his story to the narrator.

The internal conflict this story is the ravaging hunger that the passengers trapped on the train encounter, and the internal animal-like instinct that leads to eating the other passengers one by one. Another conflict is the fact that by the end we find out the man telling the story has been disoriented while on the train due to nearly freezing to death and starvation so it is unsure to the reader and the person who is listening to the story whether or not this man had actually partaken in cannibalistic activities.
The external conflict is the raging snow storm that has trapped the passengers on the train.

The story begins two men talking at a train station in Indiana. They get on very well, and converse over many topics. When the topics of politics came up, the old man said, “Let me give you a secret chapter of my life.”

The old man’s story begins on December 19, 1853. He was riding on a train with twenty-four other passengers. Everyone got on very well, and the overall mood was a happy one. Around 11 p.m/ it began to get windy and snow very hard.

They soon came to the realization that they must sacrifice one to furnish food for the others. They soon formed a committee to select who must be sacrificed. Nominations were made, and nominations were thrown out. They finally nominated Mr. Harris and Mr. Messick to be eaten. Mr. Harris was very tasty.
For each meal a new nomination was made. Mr. Walker was so good, that the narrator wrote his wife later and told her so. They continued on this pace for several days. Finally, relief came. That morning’s elections had dubbed John Murphy, but he was saved when help arrived. John later married Mr. Harris’s widow.
The Narrator then finishes the story, and leaves the train. The protagonist then asks the conductor of the train who the man was. Thee conductor says that the old man used to be a member of congress. He had got stuck in a snow drift, and nearly froze to death. He was mentally ill for several month after the incident. Now he is monomaniac, and whenever he gets in the old story he won’t stop until everyone on board the train has been eaten up.
"Let me give you a chapter of my life."
"One hour sufficed to prove the utter uselessness of our efforts."
"The journey bade fair to be a happy one; and no individual in the party , i think, had even the vaguest presentiment of the horrors we were to under go."
"All day we moped about the cars, saying little, thinking much. Another lingering dreary night and hunger."
"A savage hunger looked out at every eye. There was in it a sign of awful import--the foreshadowing of a something that was vaguely shaping itself in every heart--a something which no tongue dared yet to frame into words."
Work Cited
Personal Response
Overall, we found that the story was very interesting. It is defiantly an interesting short story that reflects Mark Twain's special character. The story requires the reader to translate some of the paragraphs for the deeper meanings.
"Summary of Samuel Clemens 'Cannibalism in the Cars."
Easy Literature Notes. n.p, n.d, Tue. 26 Jan. 2015.
Arp, T. and Johnson, G. n.d.
Perrine's Literature: Structure, Sound, and Sense
. United States: Perseus Distribution Services. page, 351-355.
This quote introduces the story, and sets the tone for the story.
This quote introduces the feeling of hopelessness that begins to engulf the passengers.
The quote introduces a stark contrast between what the passengers thought, and what actually conspired.
The quote introduces the main antagonist of the story.
This alludes to the actions that the passengers must take in order to survive.
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