The Truth To A Ballad Essay

This essay has a total of 833 words and 3 pages.

The Truth To A Ballad

The Truth to a Ballad
"At her Redeemer's throne she'll stand, And she'll be cured of woe, And He her bloodied
hands will wash, And she'll be white as snow" (15). This quote concludes the beautifully
written ballad located in the first chapter of Margaret Atwood's Alias Grace. By
summarizing the events leading up to the murders, the murders themselves, and the ensuing
trial, the poem presents the reader with what appears to be a foreshadowing of things to
come. However, though the ballad reflects many of the novel's events, there are several
differences which contradict Grace's narration.

The poetic verse and the story told by Grace contain numerous similarities. As the ballad
states at the beginning, Grace says she was sixteen years old when the murders at the
house of Thomas Kinnear occurred; James McDermott worked as a stable hand, and Grace was
the serving maid. Also alike is the poem's description of Nancy as a "no well-born
lady….who goes in satin and silk, The finest ever seen" (11). When first meeting Nancy,
Grace wonders why "a housekeeper would be wanting a dress like that," (200) immediately
noticing Nancy is dressed rather well considering her occupation. When the murders take
place in the novel, James strikes Nancy on the head with an axe and throws her into the
cellar where she eventually died with an unborn baby in her womb. This event was depicted
in the poem, as was the scene where James and Grace steal valuables from Mr. Kinnear's
house and fled across the lake to the Lewiston Hotel in the United States. As the ballad
progresses, the two are later arrested at which point Grace states she does not remember
Continues for 2 more pages >>




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