“The killed”. Though this story is eerie,

“The Most Dangerous Game” is a story whose theme is implied. Throughout the story, there are suggestions given that the theme hints at traces of Darwinism; most likely, “kill or be killed”. Though this story is eerie, it displays multiple cases of of irony such as situational and verbal irony. Through the authors uses of irony, the mood and the theme are slowly revealed. Situational irony is when the character puts themselves in that situation. An example of situational irony takes place in the beginning of the story in paragraph 12 when Rainsford said that prey have no understanding and no feelings. Whitney then reciprocates with “I think they understand one thing – fear.” in the next paragraph. Rainsford dismisses Whitney by calling his claim nonsense. Another instance of situational irony is whenever Rainsford laid a trap, its victim  was never General Zaroff as the reader expected. While Rainsford was being hunted by General Zaroff, it created a sense of suspense in the reader. Verbal irony is essentially sarcasm. Examples of verbal irony are scattered throughout the story. In paragraph 155, General Zaroff addresses Rainsford saying “We will hunt — you and I.”. Due to the way General Zaroff stated it, it says that Zaroff and Rainsford will hunt together. Later in the story, albeit, it is disclosed that Zaroff intends to hunt Rainsford. This use of verbal irony causes the reader to think and make inferences about what will happen later in the story. In conclusion, the author’s use of irony causes mood and theme to become apparent. The irony causes the reader to make inferences about what will happen later in the story and it helps create the mood and tone of errieness and suspense in the story. The irony helps to create the theme by slightly hinting at the it. In paragraph 121, General Zaroff says “Life is for the strong, to be lived by the strong, and, if needs be, taken by the strong… I hunt the scum of the earth.” This implies that General Zaroff believes that he is strong and that Rainsford is lower than him, then proceeds to hunt him later in the story. In the end, Rainsford takes General Zaroff’s life proving he is stronger. This hints at the theme of Darwinism and survival of the fittest.