Provide two examples of irony in the short story "The Sniper." 

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Walter Fischer eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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One could suggest that an example of irony in Liam O’Flaherty’s short story “The Sniper” would be the very situation in which the author’s “protagonist” finds himself. O’Flaherty’s brief narrative takes place in Northern Ireland against the backdrop of “The Troubles,” the extended period of the twentieth century that was characterized by intense hatred and violence between Protestants loyal to the region’s “union” with Great Britain and Catholics who struggled for independence from that union and for unification with the whole of Catholic Ireland.

The story’s main character is, as the title indicates, a sniper whose job it is to locate and eliminate enemy combatants and their supporters, such as the elderly woman who he kills without hesitation after she points out his location to soldiers representing the “Free State” (mainly Protestant Irish who supported the union with Great Britain). The irony of the sniper’s situation involves his own predicament:...

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