19th Century Short Stories Essay

19th Century Short Stories Essay

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“Despite its’ brevity, the short story is capable of dealing with important issues”, this statement is very true as many controversial of today have been recognized by the authors of the 19th Century short stories. Some of these issues include; the class struggle, poverty, death, equality, sanitation, education and more. In this piece, I will be linking some of these issues with a few short stories. The ones I have chosen are; The Nightingale and the Rose, by Oscar Wilde, the Yellow Wallpaper, by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Hop Frog, by Edgar Allan Poe.
In the Nightingale and the Rose, Oscar Wilde is conveying a point to his readers that love is definitely not when you have to get something special for someone you supposedly fell in love with from simply their physical appearance. He is trying to get across that love is unconditional and that it is not shallow, like the professor’s daughter’s request of the student was. I think that the only character who was loving in this story was the nightingale who sacrificed her own life so that the Student would get his chance at love. Love is still easily misunderstood like it was in this story and is therefore quite relevant to today’s life. Materialism is also dealt with in this story for the Nightingale’s efforts were wasted because the professor’s daughter didn’t want a rose any more, because it was of less material value than the jewelry that the prince had bought for her, even though the more important factor was the sentimental value, of which the rose had plenty of seeing as the nightingale sacrificed her life to create it. Materialism is definitely a relevant issue in 21st century society, I think that a lot of us would easily be tempted to make the professor’s daught...


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...reatment of Trippetta, for the king had pushed her violently and had thrown the contents of his goblet in her face, whilst his seven masters watched this, laughing. Revenge is still common in today’s times, but when someone commits a crime, revenge is not taken, instead their actions are justified. Anti-feminism is another theme in Hop Frog, it is seen when he pushes Trippetta, and is reinforced by the Caryatides, which are pillars in the form of female prisoners, which were in the dance hall. As previously mentioned, anti-feminism and inequality of women in our current time has greatly reduced however, although it may be subtle, inequality is still there. Poe builds up a feeling of suspense when Hop Frog suddenly has an of a practical joke that the king can perform, straight after someone we know he has feelings for is pushed violently and has wine thrown over her.

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