Monday, 18 May 2015

Monster Mondays - Jack The Ripper



Jack The Ripper, who terrorised London in 1888, is probably the most famous serial killer of all time, and the main reason - because no-on knows who he was. There's nothing so obsessive for the public imagination as a mystery of a killer who struck brutally and repeatedly for a 3 month period and then completely disappeared.

Jack the Ripper killed 5 women (some say more), all of them in the smoggy, dark streets of London. What caught the interest of the public was the fact that Jack mutilated his victims, the worst being the last officially attributed to him, Mary Jane Kelly, who was found in her room, her throat slashed so badly she was nearly decapitated, her body cut open and her heart and most of her other organs removed.

This monster was guilty of some truly horrendous crimes, although, compared to other serial killers, his kills were few and his time brief. It is the mystique that grew up around him that has led to his longevity. Was he a rich man, possibly a prince? Was he a poor tradesman? Did he really cut up his victim's with a doctor's skill, or was it more that of a butcher? Was there a conspiracy to protect the wealthiest in the land, or was it just bad luck that Jack was never caught?

We'll never know the answers to these questions. Even when DNA apparently narrowed down the identity to a polish immigrant barber, the results have been called into question, because it is too long ago. Time has washed away any proof that might once have been there to name the man behind the monster. And that is why there will always be another theory, another book, another TV programme claiming to have found Jack The Ripper. The mystery is now eternal.

Why do you think the public is so interested in serial killers?
~

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11 comments:

  1. I think the general public is fascinated by serial killers because we all wonder what can switch in a person to allow them to do such horrible things. Also, people can't resist the gruesome details.

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    1. true - although, a I get older, I find myself less able to deal with the gruesome details!

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  2. I was excited when that new evidence was released. I'm not saying that guy was Jack the Ripper, but it added a new piece to the puzzle. If anything, the evidence showed the guy was with a Ripper victim.

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    1. Yes, I agree, and I think that is why the mystery is so interesting, because bits of evidence, theories and ideas all keep getting added.

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  3. I've read that people are drawn to stories (in general) because it allows one to explore different situations in safety so that, should one find oneself in a similar situation, one will know what to do. Information gathering, essentially. I'd like to think that fascination with serial killers falls in line with that. It's potentially a very real threat, more real than getting abducted by aliens or facing a dragon, for example, and so I think the draw towards it is strong.

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    1. That's an interesting take - I hadn't thought about fascination being preparation.

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    2. Although I'd much rather prepare to meet a dragon! ;P

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  4. Hi Sophie - we are imbued with serial killer information by the media - it's almost drip fed into us ... and keeps being so ... even by bloggers!! No - that's not a serious intent - but you're right why are we drawn to them ... and why murder mysteries et al ..

    I can't say I am particularly .. as I'm able to switch off and ignore ... but it's juicy media hype and people can't help themselves but gossip about it ...

    Cheers Hilary

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    1. Yes, we don't seem to be able to help ourselves when it comes to gossip, especially if there's a scandal, or something horrific attached to it.

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  5. Making my way around on the A to Z Road trip! Stopping by to say hello and I hope to see you again next year, if not sooner!

    Mary
    www.JingleJangleJungle.net

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    1. Hi there - thanks for stopping by - I enjoyed your blog posts during the A to Z :)

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