The Scarlatti Tilt Analysis

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The Scarlatti Tilt is a very short story about a woman who hands an empty revolver to the police, claiming that living with a violinist was hard. The story leaves gaps and silences, but the author’s cultural and social values led them to assume that the woman shot the man due to prolonged irritation with the noise. The woman seems calm and satisfied with her actions, leading to the belief that she is mentally ill. The relationship between the woman and the man is unclear, but it is clear they did not have a good one. The police likely took the woman into custody for questioning.

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The Scarlatti Tilt is a 34 words short story written by Richard Brautigan. This story tell us that a woman who lived in San Jose handed an empty revolver to police and told them living with a violinist was very hard. The gaps and silences in the story exhibit plenty of explanations and possible results. However, affected by my cultural and social values, I assumed that the lady shot the man because he would not stop playing the violin.

I consider that the woman is the killer for three seasons. First of all, according to what she told the police, it’s not hard to find out that she has tolerated the noise for a long time and she didn’t want to hear it longer, which gives her motive of killing the violinist. All the anger and dissatisfaction reach the point where she shot him with every bullet in the gun. Then, Her way of talking seems calm and no fear. She thought that her reason to kill the man is acceptable and meaningful, and it seems that she is glad that she won’t have to bear the violin noise anymore. What’s more, as a result of common sense and criminal novels and movies, a revolver reminds me of murder or injury. Not to mention, it’s empty. An empty gun means that it has been used and someone got hurt. Even that who used that gun can’t be sure, the lady becomes the prime suspect.

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Besides, other details need to pay attention, for example, the relationship between the woman and the man. There are two variations. The first one is that they live in a same studio apartment, which means that the killed man might be her husband or boyfriend. Considering that a real violinist should have a good income, the man’s situation indicates that he was dreadful violin player. Bad living condition and limited income may cause his wife or girlfriend to have a fight with him and kill him out of anger. Or, they are just neighbors. From the fact that the woman shot him we can tell that they do not have a good relationship. The poor living condition cannot stop the voice of violin across the wall, so she killed the man she hated and got the quiet environment. Besides, the woman might be mentally ill. Her confession to the police is without regretting, not like normal people, and she felt no
guilty at all. Her illness might drive her to kill that man.

In the end of the story, I assume that the police took the woman and asked her about the detail of this murder. The woman would tell the anything to the police.

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The Scarlatti Tilt Analysis. (2016, Nov 09). Retrieved from

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