Hardback
July 21, 2017
9781625342720
English
270
9.00 Inches (US)
6.00 Inches (US)
1.12 Pounds (US)
$90.00 USD
v2.1 Reference
Paperback / softback
July 21, 2017
9781625342737
English
270
9.00 Inches (US)
6.00 Inches (US)
.82 Pounds (US)
$28.95 USD
v2.1 Reference

Making a Monster

Jesse Pomeroy, the Boy Murderer of 1870s Boston

When twelve-year-old Jesse Pomeroy tortured seven small boys in the Boston area and then went on to brutally murder two other children, one of the most striking aspects of his case was his inability ever to answer the question of why he did what he did. Whether in court or in the newspapers, many experts tried to explain his horrible acts—and distance the rest of society from them. Despite those efforts, and attempts since, the mystery remains.

In this book, Dawn Keetley details the story of Pomeroy's crimes and the intense public outcry. She explores the two reigning theories at the time—that he was shaped before birth when his pregnant mother visited a slaughterhouse and that he imitated brutal acts found in popular dime novels. Keetley then thoughtfully offers a new theory: that Pomeroy suffered a devastating reaction to a smallpox vaccination which altered his brain, creating a psychopath who revealed the human potential for brutality. The reaction to Pomeroy's acts, then and now, demonstrates the struggle to account for exactly those aspects of human nature that remain beyond our ability to understand.

About the Author

Dawn Keetley is professor of English at Lehigh University and editor of "We're All Infected": Essays on AMC's The Walking Dead and the Fate of the Human.

Review

"This is a rich and complex study. If there has been a more thoroughly researched or more effectively contextualized or more perceptive or more illuminating historical case study of an early psychopath or serial killer, I am not aware of it."—Daniel A. Cohen, author of Pillars of Salt, Monuments of Grace: New England Crime Literature and the Origins of American Popular Culture, 1674–1900

9781625342720 : making-a-monster-keetley
Hardback
270 Pages
$90.00 USD
9781625342737 : making-a-monster-keetley
Paperback / softback
270 Pages
$28.95 USD

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