Escaping: Rip Van Winkle By Washington Irving

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Kelly Scaife Anna Dickson English 202 22 February 2012 Escaping Rip Van Winkle by Washington Irving is the story of a man who goes out into the woods to hunt and escape his nagging wife, Dame Van Winkle. Rip and his dog, Wolf, go into the woods; and while Rip is napping under a tree twenty years has passed. This ended up working in Rip Van Winkle’s favor because before his epic nap he lived constantly scared of what his wife would say next, he wanted to not work and that be acceptable, and when he pieced together that he had slept for twenty years and his wife was no longer alive, he was clearly relieved. It is clear that Rip Van Winkle lived in fear of his wife’s next sentence. Irving states “the unlucky Rip was at length routed by his termagant wife” (407). As years passed, nothing changed Rip’s wife continued to nag him, “Times grew worse and worse with Rip Van Winkle as years of matrimony rolled on” (406). Most of Dame’s nagging stemmed from Rip’s inability to work around the house. Irving says “his wife kept continually dinning in his ears about his idleness, his carelessness, and the ruin he was bringing on his family” (406). The primary reason for Rip’s legendary stroll into the woods was to escape Dame. Irving tells us “Poor Rip…show more content…
Irving states “Rip was ready to attend anybody’s business but his own; but as to doing family duty, and keeping his farm in order, he found it impossible” (406). Rip was laid back and not worried about his farm, because he thought “it was the most pestilent little piece of ground in the whole country; everything about it went wrong” (406). Rip is said to be “one of those happy mortals, of foolish, well-oiled dispositions, who take the world easy” (406). Rip did not want to work, and Irving makes that clear when he says that Rip “would have whistled life away in perfect contentment” and that he “would rather starve on a penny than work for a pound”
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