What is the external conflict for the story "The Gift Of The Magi" by O. Henry?  

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linda-allen eNotes educator| Certified Educator

"The Gift of the Magi" is a wonderful story about unconditional love. The external conflict facing Jim and Della in the story is their poverty, their need for money. It is Christmastime, and each wants to give a special gift to the other. However, they are very poor and don't have the money to buy the gifts that they want to give. So in order to earn the money they need, each makes a sacrifice, only to discover that they can't use the gifts because of the sacrifices they each made.