The Monkey’s Paw Plot Structure

The Monkey’s Paw Plot Structure

…Create one using provided materials
What is the name of the author of “The Monkey’s Paw”?
W.W. Jacobs
The beginning. The back story.
…inside and around the White family home, called Laburnam Villa.
The main setting of “The Monkey’s Paw” is The story is probably set around the time it was published, in 1902.
…dark and stormy night. Inside things are warm and cheery, with chess, knitting, and a roaring fire.
India is heard about but not seen in the story.
Protagonist – Mr. & Mrs. White, Herbert

Antagonist – Themselves, Sergeant-Major Morris, SuperNatural Powers/Money’s Paw

Sergeant Major Morris
The Man with the $$$
Describe the life of the characters at the beginning of the story.
What point of view is the story told in?
The third-person narrator can even see inside the characters’ heads and comment on their thoughts, making him omniscient (he knows everything). For example, this passage allows us to get inside Mrs. White’s head:

Mrs. White […] was very happy at the expense of her husband’s credulity. All of which did not prevent her from scurrying to the door at the postman’s knock, nor prevent her from referring somewhat shortly to retired sergeant-majors of bibulous [drunken] habits when she found that the post brought a tailor’s bill.

How does the point of view affect the suspense or horror of the story?
opposition in a work of drama or fiction between characters or forces (especially an opposition that motivates the development of the plot)
Character vs. Supernatural/Fate – Does the monkey’s paw really have magical powers that will change a
person’s fate?)
the series of events after the Exposition that lead up to the Climax
What event does the author use to foreshadow upcoming tension in the story?
What country do we learn the monkey’s paw comes from?
The paw comes from India.
Name three parts of the rising action.
Rising Action
Mr. White purchases the monkey’s paw from Morris and later makes his first wish for 200 pounds to pay
the rent (at Herbert’s suggestion).
Rising Action
The next day, a representative from Maw and Meggins visits the Whites to tell them of their son Herbert’s
death from a machinery accident at work and offers them 200 pounds as a “settlement.”
What image does Herbert see in the fire the night of the first wish?
He sees the image of a monkey’s face.
What does the company representative come to tell the Whites?
That their son has been crushed by a machine and killed.
Rising Action
One night a week after Herbert’s funeral, Mrs. White forces Mr. White to make his second wish – for
Herbert to come back to life – which Mr. White feels is foolish and dangerous.
Rising Action
A little while after the second wish, the Whites hear knocking at their door and Mrs. White runs to the
door to let “Herbert” in.
Morris arrives, tells the White family about the tale of the monkey’s paw–which will grant three wishes to
three different people–and warns them of its potentially dangerous power.
What event marks the climax of the story? Justify your answer.
the decisive moment in a novel or play
What is the climax of the story?
When Herbert dies or When Mrs. White opens the door and Mr. White makes the last wish?
Mr. White makes the third and final wish – for his mutilated son “Herbert” to go away.
While Mrs. White is struggling with the bolt to open the door, Mr. White is frantically searching for the
monkey’s paw.
The knocking on the door abruptly ceases.
10. After Mrs. White opens the door and wails with disappointment, Mr. White runs past her through the door
to the gate outside.
Conflict Outcome
The main emotion the reader gets from the text.
Final Outcome
Falling Action & Resolution
The only thing the Whites both see outside their home is a flickering lamp opposite a deserted road;
“Herbert” is not there and all of the monkey’s paw wishes have been used.
What was the resolution of the story?
The knowledge that the son was not there.
What is the theme of “The Monkey’s Paw”?
Be thankful for what you have and try not to think selfishly.
What foreshadowed Herbert’s death?
1. Cynical behavior by Herbert–(line 166 “‘Well, I don;t see the money,’ said his son, as he picked it up and placed it on the table, ‘and I bet I never shall.'”
2. Sergeant Major Morris’ warning: “Line 111- “Better let it burn.” line 127-“‘If you must wish, wish for something sensible.'”
What symbol was used to express Mr. White’s approach at life?
Chess game. Mr. White does not think when he acts.
line 5-6: “putting his king into such sharp and unnecessary perils….”
3 Wishes
Bring people back from the dead
Can you connect the theme or other literary element of this story to another text you’ve read or movie you’ve seen?
Choose any one sentence from the story that seems to you particularly significant–for any reason–and copy it, identifying the paragraph. Then explain the reason for your choice.
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