Perry Smith In Truman Capote's In Cold Blood

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Perry Smith, a man forever shrouded in infamy, shot four innocent people, two of which were minors, with no apparent motive. Yet, throughout the novel In Cold Blood, Truman Capote masterfully weaves a complex web of factual evidence and first-hand accounts to repaint a cold-blooded killer as a human being in which to sympathize with. The most obvious way Perry draws sympathy is his traumatic and turbulent childhood. Smith spent the first few years of life moving constantly with his family, often living off “mush and Hersey kisses and condensed milk.” (131). When Perry was six, his mother took him and his siblings to San Francisco where she became an alcoholic. At 13, Perry’s mother died, choked on her own vomit, and Perry was put into various

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