The Devil in the White City- Discussion Questions

1750 Words7 Pages
The Devil in the White City - Discussion Questions 1. Erik Larson chose to tell the Burnham and Holmes’ stories together because they were interconnected. You have two people who used the fair for opposite purposes. Holmes was a con artist that used the fair as a way to expand his murders and gain money. Burnham on the other hand is using the fair as an opportunity as a means of proving he could do something great after being rejected from Harvard (376). Burnham was a great man and a hard worker is contrast to Holmes who was evil and used murders and scams to get what he wanted. The juxtaposition between the two characters definitely improved the structure of the novel and helped it become better organized. They definitely worked well together because the two events did overlap and were connected. I however, would have preferred reading solely about Holmes and his murders because I just wasn’t all that interested in the Burnham plot. If they weren’t written together though it probably would have made it hard to understand Holmes’ murder and I wouldn’t have been able to get a good sense of the time period and what was going on. 2. The World’s Fair had an everlasting influence on Chicago, the USA and the world. In a desperate time the fair brought much need optimism and an opportunity for improvement. They toke great pride in the fair, the mayor was even willing to close down businesses for a day. It was the first World’s Fair to be done with 27.5 million visits in a time where the population was 60 million (5). Many things we use today came out in the World’s Fair; the world’s first all-electric kitchen, the Ferris wheel, cracker jacks, juicy fruit, the zipper the list goes on and on. I gave people that would have been otherwise out of work a job, employing thousands of people who would later become unemployed when the fair came to an end. For America as

More about The Devil in the White City- Discussion Questions

Open Document