How does Zaroff stock his island with game?

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There are two ways that General Zaroff gets people on to his island so that he can hunt them down and kill them.

First, the island is in a particularly dangerous place in the ocean.  It is very easy for ships to wreck near the island just because that's the...

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There are two ways that General Zaroff gets people on to his island so that he can hunt them down and kill them.

First, the island is in a particularly dangerous place in the ocean.  It is very easy for ships to wreck near the island just because that's the way the ocean is.

Second, though, Zaroff does not just rely on chance.  He has a light set up to lure ships to go the wrong way.  That way, he can make sure that some ships wreck if he is running low on people to hunt.

Here is the relevant passage:

This island is called Ship Trap," he answered. "Sometimes an angry god of the high seas sends them to me. Sometimes, when Providence is not so kind, I help Providence a bit. Come to the window with me."

Rainsford went to the window and looked out toward the sea.

"Watch! Out there!" exclaimed the general, pointing into the night. Rainsford's eyes saw only blackness, and then, as the general pressed a button, far out to sea Rainsford saw the flash of lights.

The general chuckled. "They indicate a channel," he said, "where there's none; giant rocks with razor edges crouch like a sea monster with wide-open jaws. They can crush a ship as easily as I crush this nut."

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General Zaroff stocks his island with game by causing ships to become shipwrecked on his island.  He has a light that would indicate a channel where there is no channel, but rather treacherous rocks. When he turns on the light, ships navigate toward the light, thinking it will provide safe passage through the channel.  Instead, they run aground and are trapped on Zaroff's island where they become his prey.

The reason why Zaroff hunts men, instead of traditional game is because he has become bored with hunting animals because they lack the ability to reason.  He thought that by hunting humans they would present him with a challenge since they would be able to reason and in order to kill them he would need to outwit them. With that in mind, it could be said that the way in which Zaroff stocks his island is part of the hunt itself because it provides him with a challenge.

 

 

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