2Key Terms“Murder in the first degree… is the most serious charge tried in our criminal courts… One man is dead. The life of another is at stake. If there is a reasonable doubt in your minds as to the guilt of the accused… then you must declare him not guilty…Now, write your understanding of the definition for each underlined term in the above quote.
3Murder in the first degree- Murder in the first degree generally is a calculated act of slaying committed with malice aforethought, often requiring aggravated circumstances such as extreme brutality. It receives the severest penalty, often life imprisonment or capital punishment.
4Charge -an accusation: He was arrested on a charge of theft.
5Reasonable doubt - Uncertainty as to a criminal defendant's guilt Proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt is required for conviction of a criminal defendant. A reasonable doubt exists when a factfinder cannot say with moral certainty that a person is guilty or a particular fact exists. It must be more than an imaginary doubt, and it is often defined judicially as such doubt as would cause a reasonable person to hesitate before acting in a matter of importance.
6MORE KEY TERMS: Protagonist Antagonist Drama Foreshadowing Literary foil
7Protagonist:The central character in a story or play is called the protagonist. The protagonist is always involved in the central conflict of the plot and often changes during the course of the work.
8Antagonist:The antagonist in a work of fiction is the character who opposes the hero, or protagonist, of the story. The antagonist is central to the work in providing the conflict of the story.
9Drama:Drama is literature that develops plot and character through dialogue and action; in other words, drama is literature in a play form. Dramas are meant to be performed. Drama advances from the introduction of characters and situations to the rising action or complication, climax or crisis, falling action or denouement, and resolution or catastrophe.
10Foreshadowing:Foreshadowing is a writer’s use of hints or clues to indicate events that will occur later in a narrative. This technique often creates suspense and prepares the reader for what is to come.
11Literary foil: A foil is a character who provides a striking contrast to another character. By using a foil, a writer calls attention to certain traits possessed by a main character or simply enhances a character by contrast.VS.
12Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose This is a play that was originally a live television broadcaston CBS’s show Studio One in 1954.Two years later, Rose wrotethe screenplay for a film version, which he co-produced withthe actor Henry Fonda (who has a leading role as Juror #8).The result is a taut, engrossing drama in which eleven jurorsbelieve the defendant in a capital murder trial is guilty,while one juror stands up courageously for what he believesis justice, and tries to persuade others to his way of thinking.
13The play was inspired by Rose’s own experience of jury duty on a manslaughter case in New York City. At first, he had been reluctant to serve on a jury, but, he wrote, “The moment I walked into the courtroom… and found myself facing a strange man whose fate was suddenly more or less in my hands, my entire attitude changed.” Rose was greatly impressed by the gravity of the situation, the somber activity of the court, and the “absolute finality” of the decision that he and his fellow jurors would have to make. He also thought that, since no one other than the jurors had any idea of what went on in a jury room, “a play taking place entirely within a jury room might be an exciting and possibly moving experience for an audience.”
14Making Connections:What books, shows, movies, songs, poems can you think of that have a jury as part of the conflict of the plot?
15Meet the Characters! Twelve Angry Men is a character driven play. That means that the theme and plot unfold as we get to know the characters. Although they are only known to us by numbers (no names are used in the play until the very end), their personalities are distinct, and the inter-reaction between characters is worth our focus.
16Juror 1He is a small, petty man who is impressed with the authority he has and handles himself quite formally. He is not overly bright, but dogged.
20Juror 3He is a very strong, very forceful, extremely opinionated man within whom can be detected a steak of sadism. Also, he is a humorless man who is intolerant of opinions other than his own, and accustomed to forcing his wishes and views upon others.
22Juror 4He seems to be a man of wealth and position, and a practiced speaker who presents himself well at all times. He seems to feel a little bit above the rest of the jurors. His only concern is with the facts in this case and he is appalled with the behavior of the others.
26Juror 6He is an honest but dull-witted man who comes upon his decisions slowly and carefully. He is a man who finds it difficult to create positive opinion, but who must listed to and digest and accept those opinions offered by others which appeal to him most.
28Juror 7He is a loud, flashy, glad-handed sales-man type who has more important things to do than to sit on a jury. He is quick to show temper and equally quick to form opinions on things about which he knows nothing. He is a bully, and, of course, a coward.
30Juror 8He is a quiet, thoughtful, gentle man– a man who sees all sides of every question and constantly seeks the truth. He is a man of strength tempered with compassion. Above all, he is a man who wants justice to be done, and will fight to see that it is.
32Juror 9He is a mild, gentle old man, long since defeated by life, and now merely waiting to die. He recognizes himself for what he is, and mourns the days when it would have been possible to be courageous without shielding himself behind his many years.
34Juror 10He is an angry, bitter man– a man who antagonizes almost at sight. He is also a bigot (racist) who places no values on any human life save his own. Here is a man who has been nowhere and is going nowhere and knows it deep within him.
36Juror 11He is a refugee from Europe. He speaks with an accent and is ashamed, humble, almost subservient to the people around him. He will honestly seek justice because he has suffered through so much injustice.
38Juror 12He is a slick, bright advertising man who thinks of human beings in terms of percentages, graphs and polls, and has no real understanding of people. He is a superficial snob, but trying to be a good fellow.
40Theme Connections Prejudice gets in the way of the truth. Getting to the bottom of a complex issue takes time and effort.Check your intuitions -- neither dismiss them, nor trust them blindly.Details can be important, in context; think in terms of contingencies.There are many interpretations of "the facts."Test others' opinions, question their assumptions, and draw your own conclusions.
41More Theme Connections Civility will encourage your opponents to keep listening to you.Tailor your tactics to your target.Coalitions can work for or against you -- and they can shift.Reason and assertiveness can both be powerful tactics, depending on the situation.Patient silence and loud persistence can both be powerful, at the right times.One determined and skilled individual can wield a lot of influence.