Mammon and the Archer Essay

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Partikian is a freelance writer and English instructor. In this essay, Partikian explains that an epistemological approach to O. Henry's story is more helpful in understanding the story than merely analyzing the triumph of either love or wealth.

In a first reading, "Mammon and the Archer" is a straightforward tale that pits two contradictory characters and philosophies against one another. Anthony Rockwall is a self-made "ex-Soap King" who believes in the supremacy of money, even to the extent that money can buy love. Aunt Ellen, on the other hand, is sentimental and has a more idealistic notion concerning true love. By the end of the tale, both characters believe that their beliefs have been vindicated by the engagement of young Richard and Miss Lantry. However, neither Anthony Rockwall nor Aunt Ellen truly knows all the circumstances; each one has an opinion that is misinformed. The narrative contains...

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This section contains 1,849 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Mammon and the Archer Study Guide
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Mammon and the Archer from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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