The Monkey’s Paw
By W.W. Jacobs
Complete the following literary
1. Point of view –
Omniscient: We know everyone’s thoughts and
2. Conflict p.177 –
Herbert’s joking suggests that he has little faith
in the powers of the paw; however, what does his
reaction to the faces in the fire show us?
He may believe in the paw more than he cares to
admit; the paw and its potential has caused an
uneasiness within him.
3. Setting –
The story is set (for the most part)
at the White’s home.
4. Characterization (family) p. 174 –
This family is a close-knit and loving
family. You can see this with their
interactions with one another.
5. Dialogue –
What does the dialogue on pages 174-
175 add to the story?
It makes the story more believable and
6. Symbol p. 175 –
What does the paw symbolize?
The unknown – dark, magical,
mystic powers. Endless possibilities…
7. Suspense p. 175
a. How do Morris’s first two comments
about the monkey’s paw create
He is reluctant to talk about it; then he
tries to be offhanded.
b. What does his reply about the first
man’ wishes imply?
The man’s third wish was for death.
This implies that something so bad
happened to him that he wanted to die
– a sobering thought.
8. Characterization p.176
Sergeant Morris and Mr. White
If Sergeant Morris is sincere in all his warnings
and doesn’t want Mr. White or anyone else to
have and use the monkey’s paw, then why
does he tell Mr. White how to use it?
Perhaps he thinks he can’t stop Mr. White from
using the paw if he really wants to. Perhaps
he thinks others will have to find out as he
and the first man did.
9. Suspense p. 176 – How do you feel
when you read Mr. White’s claim that
the monkey’s paw moved when he
wished it? What do you think this might
10. Characterize Mr. and Mrs. White p.180
Mr. White – He thinks of how his son would
look like after the accident and wouldn’t want
to see their son like that.
Mrs. White – She is insistent and will not listen
11. Suspense – How many times does
the author mention knocking at the
door? What is the effect of this?
Seven separate instances, ending with a
barrage of knocks, with the later knocks
being louder and more insistent than
the earlier ones…
12. Theme –
Interfering with fate will bring great