Did you ever want something but couldn't afford it? The
short stories, "The Gift of the Magi" and "The Necklace", deal
with two women's struggles to make someone else happy and how
fulfilling your own wants can hurt you. The difference between
these stories is how when push came to shove, the way the
characters chose to spend their money.
These two interesting and ironic stories revolve around one
main character. They both try to make their lives or someone else's
life better by using money.
In "The Gift of the Magi", the main character, Della
desperately wants to buy a perfect gift for her husband.
Unfortunately, she is poor and cannot afford to buy him a gift.
This makes Della very unhappy. Finally, she decides to have her
long, beautiful hair cut off for money. With the money, she buys a
golden fob chain for her husband's most prized possession, which
is a pocket watch. The ironic thing in this story is that her husband
sold the watch so that he would have money to buy her combs for
her hair. They both sacrificed themselves for gifts for each other.
On the other hand, in "The Necklace", the main character, a
middle class woman named Madame Loisel is selfish, greedy, and
an uncaring woman. Although she is beautiful, she only cares
about money. In the story, she and her husband are invited to a
party. She has her husband spend the 400 francs he has saved for a
gun, on a dress she wants to wear to the ball. She also wants
something beautiful to go with her dress, so she borrows a
gorgeous necklace from a friend.
Madame Loisel was the hit of the party. At the end of the
night, she discovered she had lost the necklace. Madame and her
husband take out loans so that they could buy a replacement and
spent the next ten years paying it off. Madame was forced to work,
which made Madame Loisel's looks deteriorate. Finally, at the end,
we find out the necklace she lost was worthless.
So, by reading these two stories, I found out how money can
control and change people. Some people can use it for others and
some for themselves. If you're not careful, money can backfire in
your face.