Stylistic Analysis Of The "The Las Leaf" By O. Henry

3776 words - 16 pages

The stylistic analysis of the text “The last leaf” by O.Henry.
I would like to tell you a story “The last leaf” written by O. Henry. William Sydney Porter (September 11, 1862 – June 5, 1910), known by his pen name O. Henry, was an American writer. O. Henry's short stories are known for their wit, wordplay, warm characterization and clever twist endings. None of his stories can leave the reader cold blooded. All the stories have deep sense, make you debate a matter in your mind and have a lot of humorous affects at the same time.
But the story I`ve read can`t make you burst of laughing. This story has very strong background. At the first sight you don`t have enough to discuss but if you ...view middle of the document...

In the morning, Johnsy wanted to see the vine, to be sure that all the leaves were gone, but to their surprise, there was still one leaf left.
While Johnsy was surprised that it was still there, she insisted it would fall that day. But it didn`t, nor did it fall through neither the night nor the next day. Johnsy believed that the leaf stayed there to show how wicked she was, and that she sinned in wanting to die. She regained her will to live, and made a full recovery throughout the day.
In the afternoon, a doctor had a talk to Sue. The doctor said that Mr. Behrman had come down with pneumonia and, as there was nothing to be done for him, he was being taken to the hospital to be made comfortable in his final hours. A janitor had found him helpless with pain, and his shoes and clothing were wet and icy cold. The janitor couldn't figure out where he had been on that stormy night, though she had found a lantern that was still lit, a ladder that had been moved, some scattered brushes, and a palette with green and yellow colors mixed on it. But Sue explained Johnsy that the last leaf wasn`t real. Mr. Behrman painted it for Johnsy to make her believe in herself. And that was his real masterpiece at last.
This story is written in bookish style with the elements of colloquial words or phrases. With the help of the author`s stylistic devices and expressive means we can understand that the general tone of the story is serious. For instance, when the author describe the weather he uses such euphemisms as “my patient begins to count the carriages in her funeral procession”, “I must go”, “It gets dark” speaking about Johnsy`s mood and her plans to die. To make the atmosphere more dramatic the author uses such epithets as “a bare, dreary yard”, “the cold breath of autumn”, “a persistent, cold rain”.
The story is written in the form of narration with the dialogues.
There three main characters in the story Johnsy, Sue and Mr.Behrman.
To describe its characters the author uses a lot of colorful and vivid stylistic devices. About Johnsy we can read that she is “a little woman with blood thinned”. She faced such a terrible disease as Pneumonia and wasn`t able to struggle the cold, she was ready to die because of the last vine leaf would soon fall off the tree. She imagined that she like that ivy leaf wasn`t ready to come over her destiny. But her friend Sue was strong enough to help her friend. The author doesn`t give us any descriptive expressions to understand her personality but we can realize it though her actions. She didn`t give up her friend for a minute, she was eager to help her mentally not even physically. She tried to make her believe in herself and forget the silly idea about the least leaf. Mr. Behrman, the third character, was able to help Johnsy to recover. At the expense of his life he painted the leaf and put it on the ivy vine to make Johnsy think that she can pull her round as the last leaf could be stable to horrible weather...

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