Everything you need to understand or teach Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler.
The First Hearing
Darkness at Noon begins with its main character Rubashov being locked in his solitary prison cell, "No. 404," where he falls asleep, dreaming of his arrest, until the seven A.M. bugle call. When he wakes, Rubashov meditates on whether he will be shot, saying to himself, "the old guard is dead. . . . We are the last" and rubbing his "pince-nez" (eyeglasses that stay on the nose with a spring). After a "big man in uniform," later revealed to be examiner Gletkin, tells him he gets no breakfast because he has a toothache, Rubashov begins a conversation with the occupant of cell 402 by tapping out the letters of the alphabet to him.
Rubashov then has a flashback to one of his foreign missions to southern Germany, where the satellite communist group aided by the USSR Communist Party was falling apart. Since Richard, the leader of the... View more of the Darkness at Noon Summary