The Gift of the Magi Essay

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Rena Korb has a master's degree in English literature and creative writing and has written for a wide variety of educational publishers. In the following essay, she discusses the varying critical opinions expressed about O. Henry's work, maintaining that stories such as "The Gift of the Magi" are carefully crafted, achieve the author's intentions, and successfully speak to the audience for which they were written.

It would be difficult to find a reader of short American fiction who does not have at least an acquaintance with 0. Henry's story "The Gift of the Magi." This story, penned for the Christmas edition of a weekly magazine, is essential O. Henry. It is as synonymous with his name as its technique of the surprise ending.

O. Henry, pseudonym for William Sydney Porter, reached great fame in the first decade of the twentieth century as a writer of some 300 short stories. They...

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This section contains 1,985 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
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