Discuss the use of humour in "The Most Dangerous Game" by Richard Connell.  

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Certainly, if there is humor in Richard Connell's exciting and somewhat macabre "The Most Dangerous Game," it is dark.  As Rainsford himself tells the Cossack, General Zaroff, who declares that he hunts quarry with which he can match wits,

"I can't believe you are serious, General Zaroff.  This is a grisly joke."

For, when Rainsford objects to what Zaroff suggests, saying that he cannot condone cold-blooded murder, the general laughs, exclaiming incongruously that Rainsford is "droll."  After dinner,  Rainsford accompanies the general to the cellar, where his training center lies.  At the window, "grotesque patterns" are made on the courtyard below and Rainsford can barely make out the vicious dogs. "A rather good lot I think," observes the general with his morbid humor as he hums from the Folies Bergere [an opera house that had much entertainment].  Later, however, Rainsford adopts this morbid and macabre sense of humor as, having defeated his opponent, the general, he observes that "he had never slept in a better bed."


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The Most Dangerous Game

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