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O_Henry by qingyunliuliu

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									William Sydney Porter
    a.k.a. O Henry
            William Sydney Porter
• O. Henry was the
  pseudonym of the American
  writer William Sydney Porter.
• O. Henry was born in
  Greensboro, North Carolina
  on September 11, 1862 and
  died on June 5, 1910 at the
  age of 47.
• O. Henry's short stories are
  well known for their wit,
  wordplay, warm
  characterization and clever
  twist endings.
             William Sydney Porter
                                      • In 1879, he started working in his
• When William was three, his           uncle's drugstore and in 1881, at
  mother died from tuberculosis, so     the age of nineteen, he was
  he and his father moved into the      licensed as a pharmacist.
  home of his paternal
  grandmother.
• As a child, William was always
  reading, everything from classics
  to dime novels; his favorite work
  was Arabian Nights (a collection
  of Middle Eastern and South
  Asian stories).
• William graduated from his aunt's
  elementary school in 1876. He
  then enrolled at the Lindsey
  Street High School. His aunt
  continued to tutor him until he
  was fifteen.
        William Sydney Porter
• William traveled to Texas in March 1882, hoping
  that a change of air would help alleviate a
  persistent cough he had developed. He took up
  residence on the sheep ranch and helped out as
  a shepherd, ranch hand, cook and baby-sitter.
• While on the ranch, he also spent time reading
  classic literature.
• William’s health did improve and he traveled to
  Austin in 1884, where he decided to remain.
  William took a number of different jobs over the
  next several years, first as a pharmacist then as
  a draftsman, bank teller and journalist. He also
  began writing personally on the side.
             William Sydney Porter
• William led an active social life in
  Austin, including membership in
  singing and drama groups. He
  played both the guitar and the
  mandolin. He became a member of
  the "Hill City Quartet,” a group of
  young men who sang at gatherings
  and serenaded young women of the
  town.
• At the age of 25, William met and
  began courting Athol Estes, then
  seventeen years old and from a
  wealthy family. Her mother objected
  to the match because Athol was ill,
  suffering from tuberculosis, but on
  July 1, 1887, William and Athol
  eloped.
        William Sydney Porter
• The couple continued to participate in musical
  and theater groups, and Athol encouraged her
  husband to pursue his writing.
• Athol gave birth to a son in 1888, who died
  hours after birth, and then a daughter, Margaret
  Worth Porter, in September 1889.
• William was offered a job as a draftsman at the
  Texas General Land Office in 1887 at a salary of
  $100 a month, drawing maps from surveys and
  field notes. The salary was enough to support
  his family, but he continued his contributions to
  magazines and newspapers.
       William Sydney Porter
• During this time, William began developing
  characters and plots for such stories as
  "Georgia's Ruling" (1900), and "Buried
  Treasure" (1908). The castle-like building he
  worked in was even woven into some of his tales
  such as "Bexar Scrip No. 2692" (1894).
• William resigned from his draftsman position in
  early 1891 and began working at the First
  National Bank of Austin as a teller and
  bookkeeper.
• In 1894, William was accused by the bank of
  embezzlement and lost
  his job but was not
  indicted.
            William Sydney Porter
• He then worked full time on
  his humorous weekly
  publication called The
  Rolling Stone, which he
  started while working at the
  bank. The Rolling Stone
  featured satire on life,
  people and politics and
  included William's short
  stories and sketches.
• The Rolling Stone failed in
  April 1895. But by this time,
  his writing and drawings
  caught the attention of the
  editor at the Huston Post.
        William Sydney Porter
• Porter and his family moved to Houston in 1895,
  where he started writing for the Post. His salary was
  only $25 a month, but it rose steadily as his
  popularity increased.
• William gathered ideas for his column by hanging
  out in hotel lobbies and observing and talking to
  people there. This was a technique he used
  throughout his writing career.
• While he was in Houston, the First National Bank of
  Austin was audited and the federal auditors found
  several discrepancies. They managed to get a
  federal indictment against William. He was
  subsequently arrested on charges of embezzlement,
  charges which he denied, in connection with his
  employment at the bank.
           William Sydney Porter
• William's father-in-law
  posted bail to keep him out
  of jail, but the day before
  he was due to stand trial on
  July 7, 1896, he fled, first to
  New Orleans and later to
  Honduras.
• While hiding in a hotel for
  several months, he wrote
  Cabbages and Kings, in
  which he coined the term
  “banana republic” to
  describe the country,
  subsequently used to
  describe almost any small,
  unstable tropical nation in
  Latin America.
          William Sydney Porter
• William had planned on
  having his family meet
  him in Honduras but
  unfortunately, Athol
  became too ill to meet
  him. When he learned
  that his wife was dying,
  he returned to Austin in
  February 1897 and
  surrendered to the court.
  Once again, Porter's
  father-in-law posted bail
  so he could stay with
  Athol and Margaret.
• Athol died on July 25,
  1897, from tuberculosis.
          William Sydney Porter
• William, having little to say in his own defense, was
  found guilty of embezzlement in February 1898,
  sentenced to five years jail, and imprisoned on March
  25, 1898 at the Ohio Penitentiary.
• While in prison, he had fourteen stories published
  under various pseudonyms, but was becoming best
  known as "O. Henry."
• William was released
  on July 24, 1901, for
  good behavior after
  serving three years.
  Porter reunited with his
  daughter Margaret,
  now age 11.
            William Sydney Porter
• William's most prolific writing
  period started in 1902, when
  he moved to New York City
• He wrote a story a week for
  over a year for the New York
  World Sunday Magazine. His
  wit, characterization and plot
  twists were adored by his
  readers.
• William married again in
  1907, to childhood
  sweetheart Sarah Lindsey
  Coleman, whom he met
  again after revisiting his
  native state of North
  Carolina.
           William Sydney Porter
• Despite the success of
  his short stories being
  published in magazines
  and collections, William
  drank heavily.
• His health began to
  deteriorate in 1908,
  which affected his
  writing. Sarah left him in
  1909, and William died
  on June 5, 1910, of
  cirrhosis of the liver,
  complications of diabetes
  and an enlarged heart.
    The Exact Science of Matrimony
• O. Henry's stories are famous for
  their surprise endings, to the point
  that such an ending is often referred
  to as an "O. Henry ending." He was
  called the American answer to Guy
  de Maupassant. Both authors wrote
  twist endings, but O. Henry stories
  were much more playful and
  optimistic. His stories are also well
  known for witty narration.
• Most of O. Henry's stories are set in
  his own time, the early years of the
  20th century. Many take place in
  New York City and deal for the most
  part with ordinary people: clerks,
  policemen, waitresses.
The Exact Science of Matrimony
“A charming widow, beautiful and home-loving,
would like to remarry. She is only thirty-two
years old. She has three thousand dollars in
cash and owns valuable property in the country.
She would like a poor man with a loving heart.
No objection to an older man or to one who is
not good-looking. But he needs to be faithful and
true, can take care of property and invest money
with good judgment. Give address, with details
about yourself. Signed: Lonely, care of Peters
and Tucker, agents, Cairo, Illinois.”
The Exact Science of Matrimony
• After you have read the story, write a
  paragraph response on the following
  question:

 Why are O. Henry’s stories appreciated?

• Feel free to add your own opinion on the
  story you just read.
William Sydney Porter
    a.k.a. O Henry
The Exact Science of Matrimony
• After you have read the story, write a
  paragraph response on the following
  question:

 Why are O. Henry’s stories appreciated?

• Feel free to add your own opinion on the
  story you just read.
The Exact Science of Matrimony
• Why would two men write an
  advertisement for a woman they haven’t
  met yet?
• Who is the just and fair character in this
  story and why?
• Who is the cunning and unfair character in
  this story and why?
• “In all illegal activities, we must obey the
  laws in every detail.” Explain.
The Exact Science of Matrimony
• How did Mrs. Trotter become a widow?
• Why does Mrs. Trotter agree to participate
  in the activity?
• How did the two men make their money?
• What caused the agency to stop their
  business?
• "'Then are you William Wilkinson?' says I.
  "'I was,' says Andy.“ Explain?
New Story
          The Gift of the Magi
• Before you read the story, think about the things
  that matter most to you.
• Make a list of the top five most important things
  in your lives.
• Consider whether the items on your list are
  physical possessions or more abstract (did you
  list your Xbox or your family?)
• Discuss the things you value, and consider
  whether you value possessions or people more.
         The Gift of the Magi
• "The Gift of the Magi" is a short story written by
  O. Henry, about a young married couple and
  how they deal with the challenge of buying
  secret Christmas gifts for each other with very
  little money.
• As a sentimental story with a moral lesson about
  gift-giving, it has been a popular one for
  adaptation, especially for presentation during the
  Christmas season.
• The plot and its twist ending are well-known, and
  the story and lesson are sometimes subverted
  for the sake of irony or humor.
       The Gift of the Magi
• Now READ the story and answer the
  following questions…..
           The Gift of the Magi
1. How do you know where Jim and Della stand
   financially?
2. At the beginning of the story, what do Jim and Della
   each value most in the world?
3. What adjectives could be used to describe Jim and
   Della, and why?
4. How is Della's fear justified before Jim comes home;
   when Jim first enters the house?
5. What does Jim think when he sees Della's hair?
6. How is this different from Della's interpretation?
7. Why can't Della use Jim's gift? Why can't he use hers?
8. Now what do you think Jim and Della value most in the
   world? How do you know that?
William Sydney Porter
    a.k.a. O Henry
           The Gift of the Magi
1. How do you know where Jim and Della stand
   financially?
2. At the beginning of the story, what do Jim and Della
   each value most in the world?
3. What adjectives could be used to describe Jim and
   Della, and why?
4. How is Della's fear justified before Jim comes home;
   when Jim first enters the house?
5. What does Jim think when he sees Della's hair?
6. How is this different from Della's interpretation?
7. Why can't Della use Jim's gift? Why can't he use hers?
8. Now what do you think Jim and Della value most in the
   world? How do you know that?
The Gift of the Magi
        The Gift of the Magi
• IRONY:
  – The situational irony in this story is that Jim
    and Della are unable to use the gifts they
    received because they sold their precious
    possessions to purchase gifts for one another.


• SYMBOLISM:
  – The watch and the hair represent the love that
    Jim and Della had for each other. Even though
    they loved their possessions, they were willing
    to sacrifice those possessions for each other.
             The Gift of the Magi
• ALLUSION
  – The main allusion is in the
    title.
  – In Christian tradition, the
    Magi, also referred to as the
    Three Wise Men, are a
    group of foreigners who are
    said to have visited Jesus
    after his birth, bearing gifts
    of gold, myrrh, and
    frankincense.
  – The gifts that the three kings
    brought to Christ were
    precious and significant.
         The Gift of the Magi
• ALLUSION cont.
  – All three gifts are ordinary offerings and gifts
    given to a king. Myrrh being commonly used as
    an anointing oil, frankincense as a perfume, and
    gold as a valuable.
  – The three gifts also had a spiritual meaning : gold
    as a symbol of kingship on earth, frankincense
    (incense) as a symbol of priesthood, and myrrh
    (an embalming oil) as a symbol of death.
  – Sometimes this is described more generally as
    gold symbolizing virtue, frankincense symbolizing
    prayer, and myrrh symbolizing suffering.
      The Gift of the Magi
Exit Slip

Choose ONE topic:
a) Relate “The Gift of the Magi” to the
   biblical story of “The Three Wise Men.”
b) Relate “The Gift of the Magi” to a
   personal story of your own.

								
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