“The actual story is more harrowing because it exposes an underlying frailty in a criminal-justice system that convicted Mr. Carter, not once but twice. The convictions were obtained not by a lone, malevolent investigator but by a network of detectives, prosecutors and judges who countenanced the suppression and tainting of evidence and the injection of racial bias into the courtroom.”
And this is not a lonely example, Henri Papillion Charriere being the second example that comes to mind.
So why do all these half truths grab the public’s imagination, besides the artistic quality of the representations?
May this be happening exactly because of the ‘true’ parts? After all no matter how simplified or spruced up with ‘borrowed’ episodes both stories have a certain something that comes from them happening first in the real life and only then becoming representations.
And the fact that both imagination and reason are not infinite is the simple explanation for why no representation was ever able to fully encompass a single real life event.
Still one should never underestimate the power of human imagination:
“Karl May, who died 100 years ago, was an impostor, a liar and a thief — and one of Germany’s most widely read authors. He embellished his own biography with as much fantasy as the scenarios in his adventure novels, and when the deceit was finally exposed, he never recovered. But his legend lives on.”
Just another reminder that we should take anything, at least at first, with the legendary grain of salt!