"Lamb to the Slaughter" - Characterization

The End:

What do you think of Mary’s giggling at the end of the story?  This is an ambiguous ending and hard to interpret.  It could show a more sinister side to Mary, or it may merely reflect her need for a small release from the great stress and strain of the day.  Either way, both sides could be easily argued with direct evidence from the story.

Character Analysis:

On a separate piece of paper, write a brief character analysis of Mary as she is depicted throughout the story.  Be sure to explain what you think of her giggling at the end reveals about her.  Use the chart below to help organize your thoughts. 

Methods of Characterization

Examples from the story and what they reveal about the character

Indirect Characterization


  • The Character is revealed through his/her own speech.


  • The writer describes how the character looks and dresses.


  • The character’s private thoughts are revealed.


  • The writer reveals what other characters in the story say or think about the character.


  • The writer shows what the character does – how he/she acts.


Direct Characterization


  • The writer directly states what kind of person the character is: sneaky, honest, evil, innocent, and so on.



Last modified: Tuesday, 6 November 2012, 8:10 PM