Search Menu

Dead Man Walking

Sister Helen Prejean


Key Facts

Key Facts

full title  ·  Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty in the United States

author  · Helen Prejean, C.S.J.

type of work  · Nonfiction

genre  · Memoir; current affairs

language · English

time and place written · 1993, Louisiana

date of first publication  · 1993

publisher  · Random House.

narrator · Helen Prejean

point of view · First-person, subjective narration from Prejean’s perspective

tone · Compassionate, outraged

tense ·  Past, present, and future

setting (time) · 1982–1991

setting (place) · New Orleans and Baton Rouge, Louisiana

protagonist · Helen Prejean

major conflict  · Prejean struggles to save Patrick’s life as his execution date draws near

rising action  · Millard Farmer decides to assist Prejean with Patrick’s defense

climax  · Patrick’s last few hours of life, from his final meal to his last words

falling action  · Prejean returns home and, after six months, realizes she must continue to fight against capital punishment

themes · The redemptive power of love; the linked symptoms of social injustice; the importance of personal responsibility; the moral cost of executions

motifs · Supreme Court decisions; grief; the role of government

symbols · C. Paul Phelps; the death house; the work of Albert Camus

More Help

Previous Next
Maybe this source

by averybusyman, June 20, 2017

You may be very interested in this source

for some help with your essay homework

essay help

by josephbanks, August 10, 2017

As a student athlete I’m always on the grind at basketball practice and I’ve been really short on time all through high school. I usually order a research paper or English essay here and there. The website is called

and they really help me out, man. Don’t know where I’d be without it.