In the Penal Colony Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 34 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of In the Penal Colony.
This section contains 788 words
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"In the Penal Colony" opens with an officer showing an explorer a remarkable apparatus, a capital punishment machine The explorer has been invited to witness an execution due to take place in a dry and desolate valley on a remote island. Four characters are present: the officer, the explorer, the condemned man, and a soldier. Also mentioned is a fifth character, a Commandant, who is responsible for inviting the explorer to witness the execution.

Although he has accepted the invitation, the explorer is unenthusiastic about the apparatus and initially indifferent to the plight of the condemned man. The officer busies himself making last minute adjustments to the machine. He is dressed in a heavy uniform, which the explorer considers quite unsuitable for the tropical climate. The officer agrees but explains that the uniform reminds him of home. He is a serving officer in a colonial military.

The officer...

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This section contains 788 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the In the Penal Colony Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
In the Penal Colony from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.