Cards on the Table Essay Questions

Essay Questions

  1. 1

    Did Mr Shaitana cause his own murder?

    Mr Shaitana was a very arrogant man who enjoyed holding the threat of being revealed as a murderer over the heads of ye four guests he knows to have killed someone. However,because he does not know all of the details about the cases or the offenders, he does not have enough knowledge of who amongst them is truly dangerous and who was acting with another motive. His over-inflated view of himself as a crime solving genius prevents him from being careful about his own safety. If he had given the authorities his evidence the crimes would have been solved but he wanted to prove to the sleuths that he was much better at solving crimes than they and this desire to be public with his findings was what ultimately led to his murder.

  2. 2

    Is Anne Meredith the most dangerous of the suspects assembled at dinner?

    Anne is a very sociopathic character and commits murder for murder's sake, even attempting to kill her friend when she seems it necessary for her own needs and protection. The other characters killed for a purpose - Despard killed a man by accident in the course of trying to save him; Mrs Lorrimer killed a husband who it was implied was abusive; Dr Roberts, a thoroughly evil man, killed for what he could get out of it. Anne is the only character for whom the killing itself is the object of the exercise.

  3. 3

    What makes Poirot such a good detective?

    Poirot pays attention to the things that nobody else does. He seems strangely obsessed with the minutiae of the dinner party, far more so than with the conversation or the way the evening progressed. He is focused on the bridge scorecards, correctly believing them to hold the key to the murder or Mr Shaitana. He also refuses to accept answers unless he is satisfied that they are the right ones; although Anne seems to be the murderer he is unconvinced and continues to investigate until he finds the true killer. Poirot is passionate about art and artefacts and his passion for objects that are highly detailed and complex gives him a good eye for the strange and complex details of a murder.

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