All around it was quiet. [ADM2]The birds were chirping and the leaves were blowing. Suddenly, a man fled from the brush, holding only a knife in his right hand. After the fleeing man had ran some distance, another man came out of the brush holding a revolver. This man walked calmly after the fleeing man not worried that the he would escape. The old, erect man stopped, and loaded his revolver. He then took aim, shot a round and hit the fleeing man just as he turned around. The man dropped as he died instantly. The old man then walked over to the game he had just killed, grabbed the body by the shirt, and dragged the body into the brush. Richard Connell’s The Most Dangerous Game is a story based on a man who thrives for hunting humans[ADM3]. The way Connell wrote this short story reveals some characteristics about him. The Most Dangerous Game is a psychological story about the author facing and overcoming fear.
The general’s eyes had left the ground and were traveling inch by inch up the tree. Rainsford froze there, every muscle tensed for a spring. But the sharp eyes of the hunter stopped before they reached the limb where Rainsford lay; a smile spread over his brown face. This story is filled with the same type of fear Connell experienced in his life. Perhaps he felt ‘hunted’ at one point in his life and decided he had to run away from all the pain and anger. For instance, his father may have been abusive to him, so he decided to run away from the fear of being emotionally as well as physically hurt[ADM5]. Rainsford slid down the tree and struck off again into the woods… Following the trail with the sureness of a bloodhound came General Zaroff. Connell ran and ran and ran, but no matter how far he ran, his fears were always behind him. Connell would soon figure out what to do.
Connell also showed the ability to overcome his fears. At the end of the story, Rainsford confronts Zaroff in Zaroff’s own bedroom. Zaroff offers a truce, but Rainsford does not accept and they fight until the death. Rainsford had successfully faced Zaroff, his fear.[ADM7] Connell is showing that he overcame the fears he had in his life by facing them with confidence.
Tragic Irony in Shakespeare’s Macbeth
The Tragic Irony of Macbeth
There are many types of irony used in Macbeth. Without the irony, the tragedy
would not be quite so tragic.
One type of irony used in Macbeth is verbal irony. This is when a character says
one thing and means the opposite. Examples of this are when Macbeth says to Banquo,
“Tonight we hold a solemn supper, sir, And I’ll request your presence (III, i, 13-14)” or
when he says “Fail not our feast (III, i, 28).” Verbal irony makes the play more tragic
because, if the reader understands the irony of what a character is saying, then the reader can see the true nature and intentions of the character.
Another type of irony Shakespeare used is the irony of a situation. This is when
the results of an action or event are different than what is expected. One example is when
Macduff is speaking with Malcolm about the tragedies in Scotland, not knowing that his
family has been murdered. He says:
“Let us rather
Hold fast the mortal sword, and like good men
Bestride our down-fall’n birthdom. Each new morn
New widows howl, new orphans cry, new sorrows
Strike heaven on the face, that it resounds
As if it felt with Scotland and yelled out
Like syllable of dolor (IV, iii, 4-7).”
Macduff, ironically, is remarking on new widows howling, not aware of the fact
that he is a widower. This presents a great deal of irony to the reader, as well as a tragic
Dramatic irony is also used in Macbeth. This type of irony is when there is a
contradiction between what characters of the play do, and what the reader knows will
happen. In Macbeth, an example is the pleasantry with which Duncan, the King, speaks of
Inverness. This pleasantry is a facade, because little does Duncan know, but the plot to
murder him is being hatched and will be carried out here at Inverness. How ironic for the
reader, and how tragic, to hear Duncan say:
“This castle hath a pleasant seat; the air
Nimbly and sweetly recommends itself
Unto our gentle senses. (I, iv, 1-3).”
Finally, irony of Fate is used. This is when a result defeats the purpose of an
event. For example, because of Macbeth’s reaction to seeing Banquo’s ghost in Act III
scene iv is so dramatic and violent, he casts suspicion onto himself, instead of gaining