The Necklace And The Gift Of The Magi Analysis

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In the stories "The Necklace" by Guy de Maupassant and "The Gift of the Magi" by O. Henry, the plot is very distinct and different. The characters in "The Necklace" are well off, while the characters in "The Gift of the Magi" are very impoverished. Though different in plot and characters, the theme and lesson learned in the end is very similar, showing the characters the difference between "true" and "false" values and how more important love is when compared to materialistic views.
In "The Necklace" by Guy de Maupassant, the main character Madame Loisel leads a successful life. She is beautiful and was born into a family of clerks, and she was married to a clerk in the Ministry of Education. From the start, the reader can see that Madame
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The main characters, Della, and her husband Jim were very poor but still loved each other very much. Immediately from the beginning, it is seen that they are very impoverished. They only got twenty dollars a week, and their flat cost eight dollars a week. The rest is used for food. Della only had one dollar and eighty-seven cents to spend on her husband for Christmas. Their flat was very basic and cheap. It was also on the lookout from the police squad that picked up beggars- showing truly how poor Della and Jim were. Della, unlike Madame Loisel, loved her husband very much. When Jim comes home, Della greets him with a hug. She even cries when she thinks of not getting Jim a good present. She then decides to make the biggest sacrifice she could make to get money. Guy writes, "Now there were two possessions... which they both took a mighty pride. One was Jim 's gold watch that had been his father 's and his grandfather 's. The other was Della 's hair." (127) Della 's most prized possession was her hair and she had ended up cutting it. Not only did she give up her the only thing she took pride in, but she also risked facing even more ridicule and neglect from people, for it was extremely sinful for a woman to cut her hair. The reason she cut her hair was so that she could sell it to buy Jim a present. She had sold it for twenty dollars and she soon went around looking for presents to buy. She had found a beautiful …show more content…
"The Necklace" ended with Madame Loisel becoming less materialistic. From the beginning, the reader will establish that Madame Loisel only valued appearances and will not realize how hard any of it might be for her husband. By the end, she had finally taken up the hard work, and even made sacrifices for her husband, by doing dishes and the heavy housework. It is implied by the ending that if she had had different values form the beginning, she and her husband would not have to have gone through what they did. Madame Loisel could have been happy with what she had and not have had to sacrifice so much. This is also paralleled in "The Gift of the Magi" where the main characters also believed in the materialistic views. Della and Jim had sacrificed all they had to get these objects instead of focusing on the love that they had. The irony in which each couple believing in the false value of objects defining happiness and ending up with nothing really strengthened the theme. If it were not for Madame Loisel and her husband giving up all they had to pay off the debt, they may have not realized that true happiness was within them. The same applies to Della and Jim. If they had not given up their prized possession, they probably would have accepted the gifts they bought for each other and not think about what they both had to

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