The Monkey's Paw by W. W. Jacobs

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How does the author use situational irony in "The Monkey's Paw"?

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As has been already stated, situational irony is critical to "The Monkey's Paw," a story about a talisman which grants wishes but exacts a terrible cost upon the wisher. We see situational irony at play when the Mr. White wishes for 200 pounds only to later learn of his son's death in the factory, with the family given that same sum in restitution for their loss.

From here, the horror starts to escalate, and situational irony is critical to how Jacobs builds rising suspense and tension within the story. Now, however, White's grieving wife is desperate to wish her son back to life, and her husband makes the wish. This final scene depends on the situational irony previously established via the first wish to have its intended effect. By this point, the reader expects the wish to be fulfilled in such a way as to have become something monstrous in its effect, and so the tension within the scene builds higher and higher until Mr. White uses his last wish to cancel out his second one. It's...

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