English Sac – Short Stories Analytical
The stories ‘The Happy Prince’ by Oscar Wilde, ‘The Gift of Magi’ by O.Henry and ‘The Four Horsemen‘ by Jenny Pausacker all explore the themes of love, sacrifice and being non judgemental or judgemental. Throughout this topic, love, sacrifice and being non judgmental or judgemental of people are qualities that not all people value. But there are still many people who value and support it. The theme love is clearly highlighted in “The Happy Prince and ‘The Gift of Magi’. The story ‘Happy Prince ’, Wilde explores the theme of love by using the example between the Prince and the swallow falling in love. This is evident when the Prince says “you must kiss me on the lips, for I love you.” Wilde’s explores the importance of love using two different creations God has made. Wilde’s also proves that love in the story exist in many different ways. Love is shown in the Happy Prince by caring for his people. He sees that his people are in need so he sends his one and only swallow to look over his town and give away all the treasure that the Happy Prince has. Happy Prince is blind and his body parts are missing but still cries for his people in the town hoping that they will be safe. Wilde shows that love is important part of life and that caring for each other is the main key. O.Henry also explores the theme of love in ‘The Gift of Magi’.
The Gift of Magi is a strong topic that shows the theme of love. Della is really in love with her husband and that she would do anything for him. “Worthy of being honour by Jim.” Henry proves to readers that Della is a loveable, nice, compassionate women and she would do anything to make Jim happy. It gives readers emotions between how love is portrayed in both stories. Evident of love is proved in both stories. The theme Sacrifice is shown in ‘Happy Prince’ and ‘The Gift of Magi. Sacrifice is shown in ‘The Happy Prince’ when the swallow sacrifices his life for the Prince, because he stays with him even when he knows it will become too cold for him to survive. This gives readers a strong opinion on what the swallow is sacrificing for the Happy Prince. The swallow stays side by side next to the blind Prince. “I will stay with you always.” This quote explains how emotional the sacrifice is made. Since the swallow is in love (explain in P1 theme of love) he will do anything to make the Prince happy. Another example is when the Prince sacrifices towards his people, as he gives away both his eyes to benefit the poor, and also the ruby in his sword and all the gold that covered him.”You will be quite blind then” This sacrifice was made so that he won’t see his people suffer. Wilde indicates this in the story because he wants to show readers that sacrificing is a big job to do and it requires lots of courage.
Sacrifice is explored throughout the gift of Magi. An example is when Della sacrifices her hair for her husband, while the husband sacrifices his watch that had been passed down for generations. These people sacrificed the two most important things they had, so they could buy the other a Christmas present therefore putting themselves secondary to themselves. The author highlights the importances to those who sacrifice gifts and don’t think of themselves are known as wise men.
All the short stories explore the themes of judgemental and non judgemental. In the story ‘The Four Horsemen’ Matt is an example of being judgemental. Matt father influence him into judging people who are different from what he is. He learns from Father from what is acceptable in his own society and thoughts/ideas of adults which can portray on younger people. A quote that links to this topic is shown when Matt says “they’re all black over there. They don’t know how to do things, not like we do.” This quote is showing to us how judgemental Matt is because of their skin colour and being homeless. Another example of being judgemental is when Father calls one of the black boys ‘it’ like the boy is not human just because he is black. “So I kicked it out into the street next day.” Paul wants to prove to readers that father does not show any compassion feelings towards those black children. Matt Father is referring the boy to ‘it’ which symbolizes that he is a high position man who opposes to anything that isn’t as high as him like those black kids. He is being very judgemental towards those people who are different.
Throughout the story, non judgemental is also been shown when Matt starts to change his feelings towards the black kids. “I overheard Matt Brinsley ticking off a kid who’d said something about filthy blacks.” Paul wants readers to realise that a human heart can change if you look deeply into it and that is what happened to Matt. He realises that being judgemental doesn’t do any good. Oscar Wilde also explores the theme judgement in the story ‘The Happy Prince’. A strong example shown is when the other swallows are judging the swallow for loving the reed. This reflects on Wild’s personal live of being judgmental which segregates his sexual image/orientation. Non Judgemental is shown when the swallows still loving the reed and is willing to stay with the prince even though his eyes are pop out and his parts of the body are missing.”You are blind now so I will stay with you always”. The author wants readers to see that being non judgemental is the key too happiness. Lastly judgemental is shown in The Gift of Magi.
Henry highlights judgement when Della slashes off all her beautiful hair. She is scared of being judge by her husband. “Please God, make him think I’m still pretty. Non Judgemental is shown when her husband still think she is beautiful even though her hair was all cut off. “Eight dollars a week or a million a year—what is the difference?” What Henry is highlighting is that judgmental and non judgemental proves that no matter what you did wrong, good judgement will come to you if you are wise. Judgement is evident in all 3 stories. The evidence given from ‘The Gift of Magi’, ‘The Four Horsemen’, and ‘The Happy Prince’ show key themes of Love, sacrifice, judgemental and non judgemental. In these themes, readers are able to see all the different emotions that come from the different stories. They all have qualities people value and don’t value.