Katharine Brush's The Birthday Party

670 Words3 Pages
In the short story, “Birthday Party”, by Katharine Brush, Brush used literary devices such as shifts in mood and tone, from light and warm-hearted to bleak, first person point of view, and alliteration to demonstrate society’s flaw in failing to recognize and appreciate the little actions people do for one another. The reader first gets an impression of a light and warm setting of a couple that look “unmistakably married”. The speaker uses the word “unmistakably” to refer to the fact that the couple is already in love and have a good relationship with one another. One would expect the light and warm mood and tone to continue, until the mood shifted, and “it became clear at once… that the husband was not pleased”. At first, the scene was assumed to be heartfelt since it is situation where a woman is throwing a surprise for her husband, and it was expected that the man would appreciate it. However, the reaction was…show more content…
The speaker described the husband punishing the woman in a “quick and curt and unkind” way. The alliteration of the cacophonic sound of the letter ‘c/k’, shows the harshness of the husband’s treatment towards his wife, adding on to the fact that the husband did not appreciate what his wife did for him. His “self-satisfied face” shows how much pride this man has. Although this is stereotypical, men have a tendency to not let their pride down over anything. In this case, the husband let his pride get in the way of appreciating what his wife did for her, and instead become embarrassed by the situation. Katharine Brush used shifts in mood and tone, from light and warm-hearted to bleak, first person point of view, and alliteration at the very end of the short story, “Birthday Party”, to demonstrate society’s flaw in failing to appreciate the little actions people do for one another, and instead, let feelings such as pride get in the
Open Document