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In 1.05 Hannibal says to Jack and Bella Crawford, “Human emotions are a gift from our animal ancestors. Cruelty is a gift humanity has given itself.” According to Hannibal, too often humans choose to be neither brutish and savage nor profound and civilised, but merely cruel and petty and rude, which is somehow infinitely more offensive. 

In this letter, Hannibal is complaining to Will about Dr. Chilton, who delights in punishing Hannibal’s non-compliance with small but maddening penalties, such as taking away his books. According to Hannibal, a wise and rational society would commit to one of two courses of action. It would punish Hannibal’s crimes and solve the problem that he presents—a barbarity so incomprehensible that experts have no choice but to deem him “insane”—by having him executed. Or it would let him live in order to make use of him (he is, after all, a brilliant psychiatrist), and allow him his books so that he can continue to educate himself and enjoy a measure of comfort while incarcerated. But as society is primitive and contrary and founded on “half-measures”, it does neither; instead, it leaves Hannibal in the ‘care’ of Dr. Chilton, who is neither savage nor wise but merely cruel and petty (and very, very rude). 

Saturday, 27th of July, 2013 with 29 notes
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