The “hunt" and much of the plot, in "The Most Dangerous Game," is entertaining and, maybe even, spellbinding. Does it fulfill any other function?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Richard Connell's short story "The Most Dangerous Game" tells the story of Rainsford (a world renowned hunter) and Zaroff (a very rich man with a new prey). While some could find the plot and hunt to be "entertaining and spellbinding," the function of the tale is to show how a man can change.

In the opening of the story, Rainsford is on a boat, on his way to his newest hunt. He and Whitney are discussing hunting. Whitney states that hunting is only fun for the hunter, not the hunted. Rainsford tells Whitney that he is getting "soft." In the end, Rainsford's position as the hunter has changed. He becomes Zaroff's prey. Rainsford now knows what it is like to be looking down the other end of the gun.

Therefore, the function of the story is to make both Rainsford and readers aware that there is another side to every story. As the hunter previously, Rainsford has never had to be the one to fight for survival. Now, given Zaroff has made him the prey, Rasinford now realizes what it means to be hunted. His perspective on the hunter and the prey has changed. Zaroff's game has opened Rainsford's eyes.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
Soaring plane image

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial