Anne of Green Gables

Anne of Green Gables Irony

Anne's Efforts to be Respected (Dramatic Irony)

Anne, conscious of her status as an orphan, wants to be respected. However, her efforts toward this goal frequently backfire. Some of the things she does to attract attention, such as describing herself and her emotions in superlative form, tend to come across as being too intense. When she breaks a slate over Gilbert's head as retaliation for being teased about her hair, she destroys any immediate possibility of friendship with him.

Matthew and Marilla's Initial Disappointment with Anne (Dramatic Irony)

Initially, Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert are disappointed by Anne, since their goal had been to adopt a boy and it appeared as though the child they received was the exact opposite of what they wanted. However, they end up falling fiercely in love with Anne: although she was not what they thought they wanted, she was what they needed.

"Trying" to Belong (Dramatic Irony)

Throughout much of the novel, Anne struggles like a fish out of water, trying her best to fit in and to belong. Ironically, she does not really start to fit in and belong in Avonlea until she stops trying.

Anne's Sources of Misery (Dramatic Irony)

Although Anne has many reasons to despair, such as the fact she is an orphan and had a largely unhappy upbringing, she despairs more than anything about her red hair, which she describes as her "lifelong sorrow." To the reader, this is ironic because Anne is tormented by a fairly trivial thing when she has much more plausible reasons for genuine misery.