Essay about The Theme of Greed in "The Monkey's Paw"

Essay about The Theme of Greed in "The Monkey's Paw"

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Greed is a sin of excess that every single human being has at least a little bit of. When someone has the opportunity to get as much of something as they possibly can, they will go to great lengths to get everything out of it. In the story “The Monkey’s Paw,” by W. W. Jacobs, the White family experiences a big test of greed, and they even tamper with their fate to get it. Before the Whites even knew about the paw, they were living a normal, but decent, lifestyle that got them by day-to-day without any troubles. Once they received this one idol in their life that could grant any three wishes that they could possibly think of, their mind set was altered and their greediness to change their fate kicked into play. Jacobs uses themes of greed, the danger of tampering with fate, and horror to portray the terrible events that happen to the Whites.

This horrific story begins with a very calm and relaxing scene, which contribute to the horror to follow. The father and son are playing chess, and the mother is sitting in a chair near the fire knitting peacefully. This cozy setting makes this story much more exciting, because it shows that this is a normal family that is just trying to pass some time during the night. Creepy horror books and films do not always have to start out in an abandoned hotel or a chilling cemetery; the best horror stories start in a place that everyone can relate to, a cozy setting where a horror story doesn’t seem to be possible at is always the best for sudden events.

Each character in the text has their own characteristics that make them perfect for the part that they play. Mr. White is that main character in this story and his characteristics make him perfect for his role in the story. Mr. ...


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.... "An overview of “The Monkey's Paw”." Short Stories for Students. Detroit: Gale, 2002. Literature Resource Center. Web. 15 Apr. 2011.
"fate." Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. Web. 28 Apr. 2011.
Harding, James. "The Monkey's Paw: Overview." Reference Guide to Short Fiction. Ed. Noelle Watson. Detroit: St. James Press, 1994. Literature Resource Center. Web. 20 Apr. 2011.
Jacobs, W.W. “The Monkey’s Paw.” Connections: Literature for Composition. Eds. Quentin Miller and Julie Nash. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2008. 1280-1288. Print.
Mowery, Carl. "An overview of 'The Monkey's Paw'." Short Stories for Students. Detroit: Gale, 2002. Literature Resource Center. Web. 15 Apr. 2011.
"Plot Summary: 'The Monkey's Paw'." DISCovering Authors. Online ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003. Discovering Collection. Gale. St Charles Community College. 15 Apr. 2011.

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