Gift of the Magi

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In the short story, The Gift of the Magi written by O. Henry the point of view is told in third person omniscient. According to our text, third person omniscient is when the narrator looks at the events of the story externally and relates to the characters. We don’t know how Jim feels about much of anything, but he still uses Jim to tell part of the story.

The point of view in this short story is for the most part consistent throughout the story, but at one point in the last paragraph of this story, O. Henry speaks to the reader directly with words of wisdom regarding how Della and Jim were the wisest of the gift givers, because they gave so unselfishly to one another.

The point of view in this story shaped my reading by describing the lifestyle, mood and the position of the characters. In addition, O. Henry describes the setting which is New York in the winter. You get the sense that everything is dull and drabby, but yet the story is about Christmas. It is so dull and drabby that he doesn’t even mention if there is snow on the ground or not. Point of view contributed to my reading of this short story, because the author takes you away from the story at times to discuss details. He is very detailed even to the point of describing the door bell at the entrance to Della and Jim’s flat.

The theme of this story is is about love and selflessness during hard times. In the end, I got the feeling that Della and Jim had one another and that’s the most precious gift of all at Christmas. Clugston, R.W. (2010) Journey Into Literature. Etext version. San Diego:Bridgepoint, Inc.
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