Use Of Situational Irony In Ransom Of Red Chief

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Authors often manipulate the emotions of their readers through their writing. Situational irony is a device frequently used that creates the feeling of surprise by providing the story with an unexpected twist that catches the reader off guard. Along with surprise, situational irony can also create other emotions. For example, O. Henry uses situational irony in his short story “Ransom of Red Chief” to create the feeling of humor. Likewise, Guy de Maupassant uses situational irony in his short story “The Necklace” to create a feeling of sympathy. By examining these two stories, it is clear that authors utilize situational irony to affect readers’ emotions.
In O. Henry’s short story “Ransom of Red Chief”, situational irony is used to create the emotion of humor. For example, when Sam and Bill take Johnny out to the mountain, they
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In an effort to be the richest of the rich for one night, Mathilde subjects herself to a life of misery. Her loss of Madame Forestier’s necklace makes her come to know “the ghastly life of abject poverty...And this life lasted ten years”(7). Mathilde suffers through years of poverty solely because she wants to feel wealthy. Mathilde also believes that her misery is justified because the necklace she loses is extremely expensive, but she learns that this is also untrue. When Mathilde has completely paid off her debt, she meets Madame Forestier again and tells her of all the troubles she went through to get her necklace back. When Madame Forestier hears this, she exclaims, “Oh my poor Mathilde! But mine was imitation. It was worth at the very most five hundred francs!...”(8). Mathilde wasted a decade of her life, her beauty, and her youth on a necklace that was only imitation. The situational irony of Mathilde’s mistake creates a feeling of sympathy in Guy de Maupassant’s “The

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