Characterization of Zaroff In Richard Connell's "The Most Dangerous Game"


1) In "The Most Dangerous Game" by Richard Connell, the antagonist,
General Zaroff, can best be described as sadistic, arrogant, and
manipulative. 2) The worst trait of Zaroff is his arrogance. 3) He claims
that he is superior to other people of different races and that because he
is strong, it's his job to abolish the weak. 4) This idea is expressed when
Zaroff states, "...Life is for the strong, and, if need be, taken by the
strong. The weak of the world were put here to give the strong pleasure...
I hunt the scum of the earth - sailors from tramp ships - lascars, blacks,
Chinese, whites, mongrels- ..." 5) This shows that Zaroff not only acts
arrogantly, but also is sadistic. 6) His demented mind forces him to
believe that it is moral to hunt all living creatures, when in fact, he's
actually committing murder. 7) The worst part is that Zaroff considers his
hobby of hunting other humans amusing. 8) Another trait of Zaroff is that
he is extremely manipulative. 9) In other words, he can get other people to
do exactly what he wants them to do without that person realizing that he
is getting brainwashed. 10) For example, the general pretends to be very
civilized and generous thus, people start to trust Zaroff, but as soon as
Zaroff's victims feel comfortable around him, he forces them to play his
"game". 11) This usually ends up in death for General Zaroff's poor
captives. 12) Therefore, we can see that the antagonist in the short story
"The Most Dangerous Game" is not only sadistic and arrogant, but also
manipulative.