The Lady, or the Tiger? Historical Context

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Popular American literature in the decades preceding the twentieth century included plenty of adventure novels, like those of Robert Louis Stevenson, and humorous works, like the novels of Mark Twain, which often parodied the emerging American culture. Another popular form was the simple short story with a trick ending, like O. Henry's "The Gift of the Magi," In which a young couple's good intentions result in a debacle of Christmas gift-giving. Stockton was considered a humorist, and hIs stones often combined elements of humor with the trick ending. His children's collection, Tin-a-ling, was widely regarded to have brought children's literature into a new era, with his reliance on plots that did not have happy endings even though they were styled after Grimm's fairy tales and bore some similarity with Lewis Carroll's writings.

In his time, Stockton was hailed as the equal of...

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This section contains 626 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Lady, or the Tiger? Study Guide
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The Lady, or the Tiger? from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.