The Maltese Falcon

The Maltese Falcon Chapter 9 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Alone with Brigid in the apartment, Spade lets his contempt for Dundy show, cursing nonstop for five minutes. After regaining his composure, Spade asks about what happened with Cairo. Brigid tells him she was trying to frighten Cairo in order to make him stay quiet, but that she frightened him too much and he called for the police. Annoyed with her incompetence, Spade tells her she has no idea how to handle herself.
In this rare example of Spade expressing a genuine emotion, he rages against Dundy. As a man, anger is one the few emotions that Spade feels comfortable expressing. Brigid also seems to reveal that Cairo was telling the truth in that she did threaten to murder him. As such, Brigid appears to have a much darker side.
Themes
Lies and Deceptions Theme Icon
Masculinity, Femininity, and Sexuality Theme Icon
Once again, Spade demands Brigid provide more information about herself. In response, Brigid tells Spade that Cairo offered to pay her once she stole the statue of the bird from a Russian man named Kemidov living in Constantinople, but Thursby offered to pay her more for the statue than Cairo. She says she gave Thursby the statue, but then realized that Thursby was going to refuse to pay. Thus, she claims that she wanted Archer to follow Thursby to where he was hiding the statue so that she could steal it back.
Now we find out that in addition to making death threats, Brigid is a thief. Although she admits to stealing the bird, she stills casts herself as the victim since she claims that Thursby turned on her.
Themes
Lies and Deceptions Theme Icon
Masculinity, Femininity, and Sexuality Theme Icon
Spade doubts, aloud, that any of what she has just told him is true, and she concedes that only some of the story has any truth to it. When he demands that she tell him the true story, she feigns exhaustion and says she can no longer tell the difference between fact and fiction. At that, she falls into his arms and kisses him. He is swayed by desire and the chapter ends with Spade’s eyes burning yellowly.
After all her lies, Spade cannot trust anything Brigid says. In order to get him to stop asking question, she seduces him. This time, instead of asking if he wants sex, she falls into his arms. Unable to resist the temptation, Spade yields to her, the power of his desire overwhelming his reason, visible in his yellow animal-like eyes.
Themes
Lies and Deceptions Theme Icon
Masculinity, Femininity, and Sexuality Theme Icon
Love and Sex Theme Icon