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Irony Essay Examples

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Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man is Hard To Find”

Throughout Flannery O’Connor’s “A Good Man is Hard To Find”, hints are given to the readers that foretell what is in store, foreshadowing the grotesque ending that is to come. These insinuations of the forthcoming become coincidences later in the story when they actually do develop into reality, creating mocking irony. The names within the…

The Great Gatsby – Significance of Title

The meaning of the word “great” is ambiguous before reading the novel The Great Gatsby. It can imply that Gatsby is a superb individual, or it can mean great in the sense of a misfortune. It is only after reading the novel that the reader is able to perceive that the novel’s title is ironic…

“The Longest Memory” by Fred D’Aguiar

The Longest Memory by Fred D’Aguiar is a compelling and tragically poignant novel set in Virginia, 1810. The unique, fragmented narrations with its ironies and bigoted criticisms lurking in the words of many presents a definite ethical vision in which the reader commiserates with the suffering and feels contempt for the savage. The calamity of…

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“The Importance of Being Earnest” Play

“The Importance of Being Earnest” has been playing to packed audiences for over a hundred years. Why do you think it has remained so popular? “The Importance of Being Earnest” was first performed in 1895. The year marked the beginning of Oscar Wilde’s “disgrace”. Lord Alfred Douglas’s father, the Marquis of Queensbury, began his campaign…

Dramatic Irony in Oedipus

In the play written by Sophocles, Oedipus the King, there are several instances of irony. Dramatic irony, or tragic irony as some critics would prefer to call it, usually means a situation in which the character of the play has limited knowledge and says or does something in which they have no idea of the…

Irony in Ozymandias

Shelly produces a wonderful piece of irony in Ozymandias. When looking at Ozymandias we should look at the Greek breakdown of the name. “Ozy comes from the Greek ‘ozium,’ which means to breath, or air. Mandias comes from the Greek ‘mandate,’ which means to rule,” notes Biterman in his analysis of the poem. The fact…

A Visit of Charity by Eudora Welty

Irony is the use of words to express something different from and often opposite to their literal meaning. Eudora Welty successfully uses this literary technique to elucidate the theme of the story, “A Visit of Charity”. The title “A Visit of Charity” is rather ironic. Charity means to show kindness and sympathy towards others; however,…

Sophocles’ tragedys Antigone and Oedipus the King

Antigone and Oedipus The King, written by Sophocles, are deeply tragic plays with a dramatic ending. In both plays, fate arises the question: could have Creon, Oedipus, Antigone, and the rest of the family, prevented the misfortunes, which fell upon them? Or were their lives cursed upon by determination? With every event that took place,…

The irony in George Orwell’s “Animal Farm”

The last sentence in the book Animal Farm relates to the book in so many ways. First I must say that in the end the pigs became what they hate. The pigs slowly became just like Jones throughout the book. They even broke their own thought up commandments and changed them. They believed they were…

Discuss the role of the fool in “King Lear”

In ‘King Lear’, the Fool is a character of dramatic importance in the play. The Fool helps the reader, and in Shakespeare’s time would help the audience, to understand what lies beneath the surface of certain actions or verses. He equally strives to make Lear ‘see’. The Fool may be a very intriguing character and…

Billy Budd – Foreshadowing

Foreshadowing – in which a certain image or event may hint at something that becomes more significant later on in the story. Authors often use different literary devices to grab the reader’s attention, or to establish basis for plot development later on in the novel. In Herman Melville’s Billy Budd, Melville uses the literary device…

Janice Galloway short stories

The story is told from the perspective of the adult narrator looking back on a key incident from her early childhood in which she and her neighbourhood were threatened by the unpredictable aggression of the local “bogeyman” ironically named Fearless. The first level of conflict in “Fearless” is between the public and Fearless. This arises…

There Will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury

Ray Bradbury’s short story, “There Will Come Soft Rains,” set in a quiet Californian suburb during the month of August 2026, ultimately develops into a struggle between nature and technology. As the nearby city of Allendale lies silently in a pile of rubble and ash, a single house stands alone, existing within itself. The world…

Jane Austen’s Use of Irony in Pride and Prejudice

Irony is the art of expressing two meanings simultaneously; the obvious surface meaning the majority will regard as the only meaning and on a deeper profounder meaning which lies behind the obvious. The tension created by this ambivalence can be and has been put to a variety of uses. Ironies abound in Shakespeare, so do…

Dramatic irony in Of Mice and Men

The major irony in Of Mice and Men is that George kills Lennie because of their friendship. George kills Lennie to spare him from a worse death. George complained about Lennie and his defects, but realizes his importance only after his death. Once Lennie is dead, George loses the weight of responsibility Lennie caused him,…

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