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Katherine Shin

on 8 May 2014

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Transcript of IRONY

saying one thing but meaning another
when the opposite of what the reader expects to happen happens
when the audience or reader knows what the character(s) does/do not know
EX: "Quitting smoking is very easy. I've done it many times."
EX: For example, in the classic play of
Romeo and Juliet
, the Friar questions, "Come, is the bride ready to go to church?" (4.5.33).
Irony in
The Pearl
by John Steinbeck

"She, who was obedient and respectful and cheerful and patient... She could stand fatigue and hunger almost better than Kino himself. In the canoe she was like a strong man. And now she did a most surprising thing.
'The doctor,' she said. 'Go to get the doctor.'" (7)
Juana is always the supportive, quiet shadow of Kino until, in a turn of events, she, herself, requests for the doctor now that her child's life is in danger.
"'The doctor has gone out,' he said. 'He was called to a serious case.'" (12)

The doctor's servant tells Kino that the doctor is not available because he is attending to very serious matters, but the doctor is actually "pour[ing] his second cup of chocolate and crumbl[ing] a sweet biscuit in his fingers," (11).
"An accident could happen to these oysters, a grain of sand could lie in the folds of muscle and irritate the flesh until in self-protection the flesh coated the grain with a layer of smooth cement." (16)
This is ironic because one would not expect something so
to form from an
. The formation of the Pearl itself is irony.
"This pearl is like fool's gold. It is too large. Who would buy it? There is no market for such things. It is curiosity only. I am sorry. You thought it was a thing of value, and it is only a curiosity." (49)
The pearl buyer knows that the pearl is of great value, but he leads Kino to believe that it is worthless.
"'If it's a coyote this will stop it,' the watcher said as he raised his gun." (86)
The tracker believes he is shooting a coyote, however the reader acknowledges that the whimpering "Coyote" pup is in fact Coyotitio.
"Every man suddenly became related to Kino's pearl, and Kino's pearl went into the dreams, the speculations, the schemes, the plans, the futures, the wishes, the needs, the lusts, the hungers, of everyone, and the only one that stood in the way of that was Kino, so that he became curiosly every man's enemy." (22)
The setting is in
La Paz,


in Spanish. Ironically, the town is far from peaceful.
"To one he said, 'I think they have gone south along the coast to escape the evil that was on them.' And to another, 'Kino would never leave the sea. Perhaps he found another boat.' And he said, 'Apolinia is ill with grief.'" (65)
Juan Tomás speculates about where Kino and his family possibly are after a fire destroys their house.
EX: A deep sea diver drowning in a bathtub
Caroline Johnson, Katherine Shin, Sophie Spiegel
Full transcript