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ENG11: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Eliza Joxhe

on 14 January 2014

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Transcript of ENG11: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime

The Curious Incident
of the Dog
in the Nighttime

Mark Haddon’s novel The Curious Incident of the dog in the Night-Time shows the overarching theme of Appearance vs. Reality through the perspective of Christopher Boone and his skewed view of reality that affects the way he socializes and his thoughts. Due to his apparent autism, Christopher sees things differently than others and, by consequence, is viewed as someone different from his reality as the line between appearance and reality is blurred.
Iago uses his opponents weaknesses or flaws against them in order to gain leverage. He appears to be trying to help Othello, when realistically there is nothing he wants to see more than the demise of Othello. Due to his manipulative nature, Iago manages to take advantage of Othello's major flaw (his jealousy) without having Othello clue in on his true intentions. This scenario can almost be connected to the lies and deceit shown by Ed Boone. Ed used Christopher's autism to his advantage by knowing that Christopher would not question his father or want to talk about his "dead" mother. Ed's lies and manipulation of his son are almost to the extreme of Iago's, but not quiet as exaggerated. It is not until the reader finds out that Ed Boone was the one who murdered Mrs. Shears' dog that one can make a true connection between Ed Boone and Iago. Both Iago and Ed lie and deceive their way to a happy place and both manipulated someone who had a great amount of trust in them (Christopher for Ed, Othello for Iago). It is clear that Iago's honest appearance is far from his hateful reality, and it is also true that Ed's kind fatherly act was nothing more than that, an act. Whether it be a manipulative psychopath (Iago) or a lying father (Ed Boone); appearance and reality are two very different things, so don't judge a book by its cover, read some of its pages an see what it's really about before forming an opinion on it.
Christopher Boone
- Posses a form of autism and is seen as "stupid" or "dumb by fellow classmates and neighbors.
- Excels in math, science and is an overall exceptional student.
- Posses the 2nd highest marks in his class.
- Is very logical and good at astronomy.
- Is recommended by his teacher to go to one of the number one universities.
- Found at Wellington's murder scene.
- Assaults a police officer and is arrested as a result.

- A man watches Christopher have a fit at a subway station.
- Has odd mannerisms; does not like to be touched, does not like strangers.

- Is very childlike.
- Hates lies and people who lie.
- Doesn't understand "adult" problems (his mother's affair)

- Likes things to be kept clean, in place and in order.
- Disorganization makes his head hurt.

Christopher Boone is seen as a stupid and juvenile teenager by the members of his society. Due to his autistic traits, it is assumed by everyone that Christopher has the intellect of a potato. Aside from his supposed lack of brains, Christopher is viewed as a reckless troublemaker when he goes against authority by disobeying a police officer's commands then proceeding to attack him. Christopher is viewed and defined by his mental appearance. He is prejudged and given a title or reputation which doesn't necessarily reside with the reality of his being. I can relate to Christopher in the sense that people have judged and defined us both on our appearances, but have not taken time to see our realities. Just like Christopher, i too am viewed as stupid. People assume just because I look and dress a certain way that I cannot be intelligent. Conjointly, I have been told multiple times that my appearance gives off the impression that I am an airhead and people are genuinely surprised when they find out that in reality I am an honor student and take my school work seriously. Appearance takes over society's mind and gives people little to no room to see reality. It is for this reason that many people, just as Christopher and myself, are defined solely based on one small factor; not the whole package. In most cases appearance and reality do not co-exist on the same facts. Inorder to truly understand someone you must be open to both their appearance and they reality of their being.
Text to Self
Appearance vs. Reality
in media...
Appearance vs reality in the media
"For the great majority of
mankind are satisfied with appearances, as though they were realities, and are more often influenced by the things that seem than those that are"
"Reality" Tv
sports, politics and
economics in the olympics.
In advertising things are rarely
what they appear to be!


Appearances can be deceiving!
In reality TV
everything is planed
and choreographed
before hand,
initially giving the
false appearance
of reality.
Throughout the history of human beings there has been a general understanding that appearance may not always signify reality, essentially meaning in other words "looks can be deceiving". We see an enhanced or false version of reality on a daily basis due to media and tabloids, nevertheless, we also see this "fake" reality embodied by Ed Boone (Christopher's father) in the novel The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime. Ed Boone appears to be a respectable and loving father of a teenage son with autism, who is grieving the loss of his wife. According to Ed, Judy Boone (his "late" wife and Christopher's mother) passed away as a result from a heart attack. However, it is later revealed that Judy Boone didn't die at all, in fact she is still living and Ed made up the entire story of her death because he couldn't bare to tell Christopher about his mother's affair. on top of his monstrous lie, it is later discovered by Christopher that it was his father who murdered Wellington (Mrs. Shears poodle). Ed lied and hid the truth from his son all while appearing composed and maintaining his reputation as a good man, when the reality of his actions and being are far from anything good. It is this type of composure and masking of a raw and real ugly truth that is portrayed by the media. Whether it be from an advertisement to just a news story, the true appearance of the product is never truly shown, but instead society is shown a picture perfect, polished up version (just like the lies which were fed to Christopher by his father).
Appearance vs. Reality
The Curious Incident of the dog in the Nighttime
In Shakespeare's play Othello appearance vs reality is practiced by Iago who is driven by his jealousy to achieve his evil motives. Throughout the play he aims to manipulate multiple characters in order to reach his goal. He appears to be helping everyone but in reality he is aiming to sabotage everyone, his deceptive nature ultimately leads to the inevitably tragic ending of Othello and hence the death of many of his so called friends.
By: Eliza Joxhe
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