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Rip Van Winkle

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"The outline for each story, although based on native history, can be found in legend and myth." Robert M. Meyers, a famous critic, said this about Washington Irving's amazing talent in writing short stories in literature. "Rip Van Winkle" is one of Washington's most famous short stories. Washington does a fantastic job in the story using the themes of martial conflict and American Revolution. Throughout the story, both seem very noticeable. "Rip Van Winkle" covers many literary elements, all of which are very noticeable to the reader. He makes them easier to point out so that the reader can have a better understanding of all the themes he covers in the story.

The characters of this story are believable and they are appropriate for the theme of the story. Dame Van Winkle is a character that is not liked throughout the story, whereas, Rip is a character that is liked by all. Therefore, it is evident that the protagonist of the short story is in fact, Rip Van Winkle. Rip shows he is a flat character during the story. "I have observed that he was a simple goodnatured man..." (Irving 155). This proves to the reader that Rip is always nice to everyone in the small village that he lives in. "Rip now resumed his old walks and habits..." (Irving 165). This says that even after being asleep for twenty years he can still come back and resume his life and be even happier than he was before. These quotes prove that Rip Van Winkle stays the same even after sleeping through the American Revolution. He continues to have a positive attitude even though his surroundings have changed. Apart from being a flat character, Rip Van Winkle is also a dynamic character. "Times grew worse and worse with Rip Van Winkle as years of matrimony rolled on; a t...

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...ood by all who read it. The themes are easily understood and the literary elements help to show them.

Works Cited

Canby, Henry Seidel. "Washington Irving." DISCovering Authors. Online ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Student Resource Center - Gold. Web. 26 Jan. 2010.

Clark, William Bedford. "Washington Irving." DISCovering Authors. Online ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Student Resource Center - Gold. Web. 25 Jan. 2010.

Irving, Washington. "Rip Van Winkle." Elements of Literature. Vol. 5. Austin: Rinehart and Winston, 2000. 154-65. Print.

Myers, Robert M., and Andrew B. Myers. “Washington, Irving.” DISCovering Authors. Online ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Student Resource Center – Gold. Web. 13 Jan. 2010.

Snell, George. “Washington, Irving: A Revaluation.” DISCovering Authors Online ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Student Resource Center – Gold. Web 13 Jan 2010.
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