Ripley Murdering Himself in Order Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

"Dickie's money had given him only an added momentum on the road he had been travelling" (Highsmith). This quotation shows two key facts. One is that Ripley indeed murdered Greenleaf for the money the latter possessed, which Ripley appropriated. The second is that this appropriation of money and wealth was the direction Ripley's life was "travelling" -- which underscores the fact that he desires material wealth. By having him kill Greenleaf and impersonates him to get material wealth, the author demonstrates that Ripley is amoral and motivated by greed.

Lastly, it is significant to note that the amorality that leads Ripley to murder Dickie is intrinsically related to the sense of entitlement he possesses. Ripley's murder of Greenleaf was like the lie he told to his father and much like all the other crimes he committed -- things Ripley did because he believed he was entitled to the rewards they yielded. The following quotation proves this point. "He remembered that right after that, he had stolen a loaf of bread from a delicatessen counter and had taken it home and devoured it, feeling that the world owed a loaf of bread to him, and more" (Highsmith). This quotation refers to a previous crime Ripley committed, in which he felt justified about stealing and eating a loaf of bread. Ripley believed he was "owed" that bread, "and more." It is this feeling of entitlement that leads him to murder Greenleaf and that is responsible for his amoral character. Other sources corroborates this fact as the following quotation, written about Ripley, strongly suggests. "He wants money, freedom and success…he's just gone about achieving it the wrong way" (Kimbofo). Money is Ripley's principle motivation for killing Greenleaf.

In summary, Ripley kills Greenleaf and desires to appropriate Greenleaf's life in order to gain wealth. The fact that Tom values himself and material wealth over virtually anything else in the world is what renders him as an amoral person.

Works Cited

Highsmith, Patricia. The Talented Mr. Ripley. New York: Penguin. Print. 1955. (1).

Kimbofo, H. "The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith." Reading Matters. 2012. Web. http://kimbofo.typepad.com/readingmatters/2012/02/the-talented-mr-ripley-by-patricia-highsmith.html

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

Highsmith, Patricia. The Talented Mr. Ripley. New York: Penguin. Print. 1955. (1).

Kimbofo, H. "The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith." Reading Matters. 2012. Web. http://kimbofo.typepad.com/readingmatters/2012/02/the-talented-mr-ripley-by-patricia-highsmith.html

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