Among the most popular short stories in the world of literature, one can find a novel “Charles” written by Shirley Jackson and “The Open Window” created by Saki (known as Hector High Munro). These two novels are often compared because of their numerous similarities as well as some differences between the stories. Even though the novels “Charles” and “The Open Window” were written by different authors, they depict very similar ideas, themes, and motives that cannot go unnoticed.
Similarities Between “Charles” and “The Open Window”
– Both novels are humorous stories
The element of humor is one of the most important motives that can be found in the novels “Charles” by Jackson and “The Open Window” by Saki. To support this particular argument, it is needed to provide the examples of humor taken from each of these short stories. Taking into consideration this amazing short story, you may notice that the author applied the element of humor by creating a unique character named Laurie. These motives can be found in different scenes of the novel. In particular, you may notice the elements of humor taken from Laurie’s attitude towards a very strange and even bad behavior of Framton. Another example of the use of humor by the author is the reaction of his parents to this particular situation. For instance, bad behavior of this character (Framton) may be observed at lunch when he spoke incorrectly, gave notice to the words of his teacher, and even spilled the milk of his tiny sister. In the novel “The Open Window,” we can find the elements of humor as well; however, in this case, the humor used by the author has the ironic nature.
– In both “Charles” and “The Open Window,” young characters lie to the adults.
Indeed, the fact of lies unites these two short stories. In “Charles,” Laurie lies to an adult while Vera tells lies in a short story “The Open Window.” These characters are extremely similar since they use considerably common techniques related to the use of words. In an attempt to manipulate the use of their words, both Laurie and Vera tend to use a lot of details. It is one of the common features of both characters of the novels.
– The authors of both stories attempted to portray the issue that people are usually unaware of their inner desires.
Differences Between “Charles” and “The Open Window”
– Different ages of central characters
What we can tell about the age difference of central characters. Taking into consideration the age difference between Laurie and Vera, one may notice a great difference between these two true short stories. Due to this difference between the central characters, Laurie and Vera lied because of different reasons. For instance, in the novel “Charles,” readers have an opportunity to learn an interesting story about a little boy named Laurie, who brought many problems in his kindergarten school as a result of his bad behavior. In an effort to avoid the punishment, Laurie lied to his parents.
– Difference in details
In this case, it is no need to go deeper since a given difference lies on the surface. Again, we have to renew the subject of children’s lies. Despite the fact that both children do not tell the truth, their stories are completely different. This issue can be noticed if we pay our attention to the details of these stories. In the first short story, “Charles,” the author portrays Laurie’s mother, who is concerned because of the aggressive behavior of her son. In order to protect himself and avoid the possible punishment, this boy invents an interesting true story about another ill-behaved child named Charles who brings troubles to the kindergarten school. As a result, Laurie’s mother thinks that her son changed his behavior because of the misbehaved Charles. That day, a poor woman decides to meet Charles’ mother. When she comes to school, she realizes Laurie does not have a classmate named Charles. In a short story “The Open Window,” we can learn a story of Mrs. Stapleton and her little niece named Vera. At the day, when Mr. Nuttel visits this amazing family, Vera tells him a story she invented in her mind. This story is related to the open window that her aunt keeps open every day. Vera frightened Mr. Nuttel by saying that many people disappeared because of that open window. In this case, we can conclude that this little girl invents different stories for her own amusement.
– Humor VS Irony
As it was mentioned above, both short stories contain the elements of humor that make them look very similar. Despite this fact, there is a great difference between “Charles” by Jackson and “The Open Window” by Saki. In this case, the detailed analysis of both novels helps us identify this particular difference. While the author of a well-known short story “Charles” focuses on the depiction of humor, another prominent novelist uses the element of irony in “The Open Window.” The use of this element is closely associated with one of the main characters of the novel, who is known as Framton. According to the plot of the story, Framton says that doctors recommended him to have a complete rest, avoid mental stress and anxiety, and prevent any physical exercise during the process of treatment. To follow all the prescriptions of the doctors, this interesting character created by Saki moves to the English countryside. In an effort to find the ‘nerve cure,’ this character created by the author moves to the beautiful, peaceful village. This is the main ‘ironical’ situation in a short story since Framton experiences numerous events that are very contradictory to his primary goal related to finding the inner peace and harmony with himself.