Irony In O. Henry's Short Story

1101 Words5 Pages
O. Henry (1867 – 1910), an American writer, who is famous mainly for his short stories. These stories usually focus on the image of the poor who spends their daily living to earn. Perhaps O. Henry knows so well about this kind of life that his stories always convey the heartfelt sympathy with the characters. Besides his sympathy, he expresses his humor through every story so that his stories always contain unexpected climaxes, which lead to an amazing ending. Some of his celebrated stories are “the Ransom of Red Chief”, “The Cop and the Anthem”, “A retrieved Reformation”, “The Duplicity of Hargraves”, “The Caballero’s Way”, and especially “The Gift of the Magi”. People believed that this story was written at Pete’s Tavern on Irving Place in…show more content…
The two versions involve a young married couple and the way they buy the secret Christmas gifts for each other with a little money. Although the modern version changes some details, it still conveys what O. Henry wants to transmit. Through laughter, author’s compassion was expressed. In spite of some differences, two of them are classic examples of irony. Irony is a literary technique in which an expectation of what is supposed to happen differs enormously from the actual result. In gift of the magi, the two main characters sold their most valuable asset to earn money to buy something special for their lover. In their situation, they should not waste your money buying something that have no use; however, just because of love, they accept all. In the end, the special gifts that they carefully prepare are not what they receive, but something they can not expect: they know how much they love each other. It can be seen that the themes of original version still unchanged. O. Henry focuses on three themes: wealthy and poverty, generosity and the most important – love. Of course, Ann Dandron-Duke is loyal to these
Open Document