Irony In The Necklace And The Ransom Of Red Chief

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David Foster Wallace once said: “The great thing about irony is that it splits things apart, gets up

above them so we can see the flaws and hypocrisies and duplicates.” Situational irony catches the

reader by surprise with different types of emotions. Also, it creates an unexpected twist. It shocks its

audience but still leaves them wondering. For instance, O. Henry, the author of “The Ransom of Red

Chief,” provides humor in order to create irony to mess with the reader’s emotions. While Guy de

Maupassant creates an emotional roller coaster in “The Necklace” by using whimsical actions and

sympathy. Any author can show situational irony create affection between the story and the reader.

In the story, “The Ransom of Red Chief,” by O. Henry, irony shows up to create a
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Red Chief’s father requests “you bring Johnny home and pay me

two hundred fifty dollars in cash and I agree to take him off your hands” (52). This comment introduces

irony with humor that twists the story, and the goal of the kidnappers. O. Henry’s story, “The Ransom

of Red Chief,” creates a farce comedy to tickle the reader's funny bone.

The story, “The Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant, shows irony that creates a pitiful and

surprising tale. For instance, Mathilde wants to be rich but she becomes poor. Throughout the story,

Mathilde complains and wishes that she is rich like her friend Jeanne. Her life is fine living in a simple

apartment with a maid and a hardworking husband. But she is still not satisfied in middle class. Soon

after she declines to poor. Mathilde explains to Jeanne “‘I brought you another one [necklace] just like

it. And for the last ten years we [Mathilde and her husband] have been paying for it. You realize it

wasn’t easy for us; we had no money… Well, it’s paid for at last, and I’m glad indeed’” (8). After

paying off the necklace, her dreams of being rich disappears like her money. Another example of
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