Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog

Topics: President of the United States, American Civil War, William Henry Harrison Pages: 1 (275 words) Published: October 20, 2012
How Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog is a reflection of realism, but also has a hint of naturalism. * The first reason I believe that realism is exemplified is the way in which the story is set up: two men engaging in conversation, with basic and general mannerisms for the era and time which it takes place. Also, realism also usually reflects dialect and culture (as can naturalism) which is clearly portrayed. “Well, thish-yer Smiley…”(Lauter 58) and “I’ve got my opinion, and I’ll resk forty dollars that he can outjump ary frog in Calaveras county” (Lauter 59) are both examples of dialect. * The second reason that I believe realism is portrayed might be a bit of a stretch and outside the box but it is because of the names of the pets. At first I didn’t think much of the name “Andrew Jackson” (the dog) besides it resembled a former U.S. President. As I read the story a second time, I realized that the traits of the dog were similar to those of Andrew Jackson the President. This led me to wonder about the name Daniel Webster, which I had not heard of but thought there might be some connection. After some quick research, it turns out Daniel Webster was a senator and figure from the Civil War Era (Biography.com). Webster (the senator) also had traits that were clearly portrayed the Webster the frog. * I believe there are a few small hints of naturalism in the sense that Jim Smiley is an uncontrollable addict of gambling and just how crazy people are for money and thrill, which exemplifies uncontrollable forces.
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