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What is the climax of the story Monster?
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The climax, the most intense part of any story, is called the
turning point because it determines how the main conflict will be
resolved. Steve’s main conflict is his internal struggle of
deciding whether or not he really is a “monster”. He writes that he
is “so scared. My heart is beating like crazy and I am having
breathing trouble.” On the other hand, Steve is a liar because he
was near the store on the day of the murder. He’s also hurt his
family. Steve says of his mother, “In a way I think she was
mourning me as if I were dead.” His father doesn’t know who Steve
is any more. These are the conflicts Steve has within him to decide
whether he has become the “monster” he’s been portrayed as.
When do we know the outcome of this internal struggle Steve has?
I believe it’s after he’s found innocent and discovers that he
still has to pay a price for his behavior. That price is his image
in other people’s eyes and in Steve’s own eyes. Steve thought
being acquitted would allow him to go on with his life, but he
learns that isn’t the case. He thinks he “looks like one of the
pictures they use for psychological testing, or some strange beast,
a monster.” In the end, Steve has to decide if he can overcome
his image of himself and in other’s eyes, or if he will
always be a “monster”.
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