Ironic Sketches Of A Little Town. Speaks Of Stephen Leacock And His Work

1880 words - 8 pages

It takes a certain type of character to see the humour in everyday life. It takes an even greater character to express the humour in ways that other people can appreciate and subsequently find gaiety therein. Stephen Leacock is such a character, and his compilation of short stories Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town recognizes, and assists the reader to recognize, one's need to laugh at their surroundings, their culture, and the people that interact in their lives.Leacock is known for his profound ironic and satirical wit but, in the case of Sunshine Sketches, he offers aspects of tragic irony and sagacious insight with regards to everyday, small-town life as well, which serves to further enhance the value of his humour.Just as Leacock was interested in the techniques of humor, he was interested in the language of humor. Besides the careful selection of language, said Leacock, humor demanded a 'great naturalness' of language, the use of phrases and forms so simple that writers straining after effect would never get them. [Critics] felt that one of the main reasons for Leacock's success was that his style was that of 'a talker rather than a writer'. Another said...'He talked to the world. And the talk was good.' (Curry. p.242-243)Satire is defined as a genre in which the author attacks some object, using his means of wit or humour that is either fantastic or absurd. In the case of Sunshine Sketches, Leacock's target is a fictitious small town in southern Ontario, which could be, and often is, compared to all other small towns across the country. Leacock immerses the reader amidst a collection of ordinary characters who become extraordinary due to Leacock's grasp of the comedy within human nature and the scope of small-town culture and tradition.By utilizing elements of both comic and tragic irony, which by definition suggest varying divisions between words or events and their contexts, Leacock not only creates a humorous environment for his characters, but also one in which the reader may laugh at situations and idiosyncrasies which are strikingly similar to their own. Events such as the sinking of the Mariposa Belle in six feet of water and the subsequent rescue attempts by Mariposans, the comedic courting rituals of the extremely shy Peter Pupkin, and the inane attempts to raise money on behalf of the church are all examples of these sharp, ironic situations.To understand the irony in any work, one must first appreciate the context of such a work. With regards to Sunshine Sketches, the town of Mariposa resembles any other town of its day; a place where everybody knows everybody, and the distinctness of character is very apparent among the citizens. The events are simplistic and possess an unstated air of politeness and manners that couldn't be found in larger cities. What the reader is exposed to is a good-natured, well-intentioned group of people who simply live Murphy's Law; that what can go wrong, surely will, and definitely does. Leacock...

Find Another Essay On Ironic Sketches of a little town. Speaks of Stephen Leacock and his work

Stephen Hawking Movie Summary: Biography Of Stephen Hawking, His Ideas And Ideals

491 words - 2 pages to be punished, but a good one that was welcomed warmly. He graduated high school and attended Oxford College, where he didn't do much work. Hawking seemed bored at Oxford and only completed about three fifths of the work assigned. He was brilliant, he could finish any homework or any test without even trying, so he didn't. Stephen was not proud of his laziness in the work department and, if it hadn't been for the illness that would soon infect

To Dream a Little Dream. Speaks of dreams, how philosophers and the Greeks view them, and which elemnts dreams can contain. Personal experience included

2030 words - 8 pages and Parker). Freud's work has been a valuable source, but his interpretation of symbols are now criticized. as Parker and Parker explained, "Freud's interpretations of dreams are based on sexual repressions" (23). However, the views of Allen Hobson, a Harvard psychiatrist and neuroscientist, are completely opposite than those of Freud. Hobson believed that while sleeping the brain produces a barrage of electrochemical signals which can cause us to

Emily Dickinson. Speaks of her work. Includes examples of a couple of her poems and what critics thought of them. Includes also personal comments

1746 words - 7 pages of Amherst College. Emily's mother was Emily Norcross Dickinson. Emily had one older brother, William Austin and a little sister, Lavinia. She was educated at the Amerherst Academy, the institute that her grandfather helped found. She also spent a year at Mount Holyoke Female Seminary in South Hadley, but had left because she did not like the religious environment. For a woman of this time, this much education was very rare.1Emily Dickinson was

Illuminating the Path of Progress, Speaks of Thomas Alva Edison and his invention

1393 words - 6 pages invention of the research and development laboratory continues to be one of America's most important tools.Edison owed his success to hard work. He often said his inventions came from '1% inspiration and 99% perspiration!' He believed in himself and was willing to try different ways of doing things. He worked hard and did not give up.Edison's wealth and scientific accomplishment set him apart from others. However, things that contributed to his fame were things he had in common with many average Americans.Most Americans would find it hard to go through a day without using an invention created by Edison.

Essay on the life of Alan Turing and a discription of his life work

885 words - 4 pages after, he chose to study artificial intelligence and biological forms. He proposed a method called the Turing test, to determine whether machines had the ability to think. During World War II, Turing worked as a cryptographer for the British Foreign Office. In 1951, Turing was named a Fellow of the Royal Society and in 1952, he began to publish his work on the mathematical aspects of pattern and form development in living organisms. In 1954, he

An overview of "Suffer the Little Children" by Stephen King

852 words - 3 pages For my midterm short story review, the two stories I chose to read were: 1. O. Henry's, The Ransom of Red Chief (because I was in the play version of the story in high school) and 2. Stephen King's, Suffer the Little Children (because I really like Stephen King). The one I chose to write about however was the second one.The plot starts out with a third grade teacher named Miss Sidley. King in the first paragraph of the story aptly compares her

Symbolic and Ironic References in The Story of an Hour

820 words - 4 pages life of freedom for her, only to later be devastated by his reappearance causing her to die of the joy that kills, or so it was proclaimed. In “The Story of an Hour” there are various ironic and symbolic references that can be found, all of them having a significant impact on Louise Mallard’s exotic view of her husband’s death. Louise Mallard is first labeled as a woman with heart problems, more of a soft hearted woman who is incapable to take

Symbol and Ironic References in The Story of an Hour

1466 words - 6 pages found out here husband was killed in a train wreck but she didn’t take it as heard as they would have though.Mrs. Mallard is actually happy that her husband has died and instead looks forward to her coming year being free.Mrs. Mallard is described as being young and having a fair calm face. Symbolizing the beauty and innocence. Brently mallard had a repressed her, and how though the smilingly tragic event she is freed of his rule over her and she is

Politics is an Ironic Business: A Comparison of Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal and Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery

893 words - 4 pages new problem. This makes no sense since children are required to grow and improve the social state of the country which the narrator alludes to by stating that “making these children sound useful members of the commonwealth would deserve so well of the public, as to have his statue set up for a preserver of the nation” (Swift 498) which produces an ironic consequence of making the narrator a flip-flopper. Jackson’s The Lottery starts off by

Symbolic and Ironic References in The Story of an Hour

1510 words - 7 pages victory”. The prudence that she showed might have been the cause of her death. It’s astonishing that an hour of peace and tranquility is power full enough to trap you in a thought for good. What little time she triumphed over the death husband and beginning of her “new found freedom” (free term paper) it seemed to only be an hour. Works Cited 123helpmeEditors. “Symbolism in ‘The Story of an Hour’”.123helpme.123helpme, Inc., N. d. Web. 17

The Ironic Paradox of Love!

867 words - 4 pages enpierced with his shaft, to soar with his light feathers, and so bound I cannot bound a pitch about dull woe. Under love’s heavy burden do I sink” (1. 4. 19). The extreme pain described by Romeo himself, however, is soothed in no time; no sooner does he sees Juliet than he forgets about the pain of losing Rosaline and madly falls in love again. Romeo altered from depression to elation in one day, from love at the first sight to making love in just

Similar Essays

Stephen King And An Anlysis Of His Work

1355 words - 5 pages The main quality of literature in our society is its ability to entertain the masses. Some authors use horror and mystery to keep their reader's attention. Stephen King is the epitome of horror writers. In writing horror mystery novels, Stephen King utilizes small towns, a unique writing style, and people's inherent fears to scare the pants off his readers.Fear is the basis for nearly all horror fiction, especially in Stephen King's novels

Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Speaks Of His Work ,And Includes Eamples From Some Of His Poems

1816 words - 7 pages their meaning, we catch glimpses of those delightful people who formed the golden inner circle of his friends in the days of his young manhood. They may all be termed, as Coleridge himself names one or two of them, Conversation Poems, for even when they are soliloquies the sociable man who wrote them could not even think without supposing a listener. They require and reward considerable knowledge of his life and especially the life of his

Biography And Work Of Stephen King

1354 words - 5 pages , autobiographies, children's books, and short stories. King's works are so powerful because he uses his experience and observations from his life and (finish) Stephen Edwin King was born in Portland, Maine on September 21, 1947. His parents Donald King a Merchant Marine captain and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury also adopted a son, David King that was born in 1945. He and his brother David spent much of their childhood living between Fort Wayne, Indiana

The Viewpoints Of Stephen Crane And His Novel Maggie: A Girl On The Streets

916 words - 4 pages “[E]nvironment is a tremendous thing in the world, and frequently shapes lives regardless.” (“Although it’s origins…”) Stephen Crane was influenced to write his 1893 novella, Maggie: A Girl of the Streets, as a result of his religious family, the secrecy to publish a novel that reveals the reality and impurity of the real world and from the impact of needy, urban landscapes that ended realism and began naturalism. Beginning in the early