Washington Irving's 'Rip Van Winkle'

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Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle” is a short story about how a man living in post-revolutionary war times travels through time and finds that his life has changed drastically. Essentially, the story does an exceptional job of conveying the emotion of the protagonist, a lackadaisical Mr. Rip Van Winkle. I love that this story is so rich in allegories that it is open to individual interpretation; you receive what you wish to receive from it. As the plot persists, Irving accomplishes illustrating countless themes from the text, “Change is inevitable”, “Time is of the essence” and “Sometimes hard word does pay off”, among others. An in-depth analysis of the short story, “Rip Van Winkle” reveals many allegories and symbolic messages meant to provide information about the condition of a post-revolutionary “New World” and the relationship between both the American and the British during the early days of American colonization. In Washington Irving's short story, Rip Van Winkle, The main character, Rip, experiences an almost fairy-tale like event. After enjoying a few drinks with a rather aesthetically questionable group of men he passes out and awakens twenty years later in an entirely different period in time. A revolution has ensued and life as Rip Van Winkle has known it is now history. In the fiction of Rip Van…show more content…
The house itself may play a role in the overall symbolism of a post-revolutionary United States. The author writes that the building was "time-worn and weather beaten", leaving the reader to imply that the struggle for freedom that his forefathers endured throughout their lives had stopped abruptly and reached its end when it came to Rip Van Winkle. Unlike his noble, chivalrous ancestors, Rip was just as worn out as the complacent philosophy of the United States towards Great
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