What is the basic situation in "The Most Dangerous Game"?

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mercut1469 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The basic situation in Richard Connell's short story "The Most Dangerous Game" is that a world renowned American hunter named Sanger Rainsford accidentally comes to the island of General Zaroff, a former Russian military man who has a passion for hunting and, because he has become bored with hunting animals, now hunts men on his private island in the Caribbean Sea. Rainsford had been on his way to South America to hunt jaguars when he fell from his yacht after hearing what he thought was a gunshot coming from a nearby island. After struggling in the ocean, Rainsford makes it ashore to the island.

On shore, Rainsford discovers the empty cartridge of a twenty-two bullet, which puzzles him because it appears as though the bullet had brought down quite a large animal judging by the battered weeds which are stained with blood. The discovery proves to be foreshadowing as Rainsford soon learns that General Zaroff has devised a particularly diabolical "game" where he gives a man a head start and then tracks him through the jungle in a murderous contest which, before Rainsford had arrived, had always been won by Zaroff. Much of the story, then, is about Zaroff's relentless tracking of Rainsford and the American's ability to stay one step ahead.  

edcon eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The basic situation in Richard Connell's 1924 story is that Sanger Rainsford, a New Yorker and a noted big-game hunter, falls off a yacht and into the world of General Zaroff, a Cossack and hunting enthusiast.

General Zaroff knows Rainsford by reputation; the latter has written an account of his hunting exploits. The Cossack is independently wealthy and bored; his only pleasure is hunting, and he has slaughtered every animal he considers worth hunting. Consequently, Zaroff has turned to hunting the ultimate quarry: humans. In Sanger Rainsford, Zaroff recognizes prey that will provide him with the challenge he is looking for: one that uses reason instead of instinct for survival.  

Zaroff gives Rainsford no choice; he must participate in the hunt, and the rest of the story is comprised of their competition in the jungle with one man emerging as the victor and the other as the victim. 

brendawm eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The basic situation in "The Most Dangerous Game" is that of the struggle for survival or survival of the fittest, but it could also be good versus evil.  Check out the link below for thorough information on "The Most Dangerous Game."

peypey01 | Student

them geting traped on the island

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The Most Dangerous Game

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