Words nearby situational irony
MORE ABOUT SITUATIONAL IRONY
What is situational irony?
Situational irony is when the outcome is the opposite or completely different from what was expected.
Situational irony involves the result of a situation not matching with your expectations, such as a baker being allergic to flour. You would not expect a person who is allergic to flour to take a job that involves a lot of flour.
Two other forms of irony are verbal irony and dramatic irony. In verbal irony, a person uses words that mean one thing but imply that the reality is different, such as a person saying, “Great weather today!” when it is raining. In dramatic irony, the audience knows something that the characters in the story don’t. Dramatic irony is a situation in which the audience or reader has a better understanding of events than the characters in a story do.
Why is situational irony important?
The phrase situational irony has been used since at least 1912. This literary device is much older, however, and was used by writers such as William Shakespeare and Sophocles. The phrase combines the word situational, which describes something that is related to a situation or a set of circumstances, and the infamously confusing word irony, which is used to indicate that expectations or attitudes do not match reality.
A famous example of situational irony is the 1905 story, “The Gift of the Magi” by O. Henry. In the story, a husband sells his watch to buy combs for his wife’s hair and the wife sells her hair to buy a chain for her husband’s pocket watch. In a case of situational irony, the couple’s actions have resulted in unexpected outcomes as both gifts have become useless.
In a more recent example, the 1999 film The Sixth Sense tells the story of a man trying to help a child who is able to see ghosts. The situational irony of the film is that the man himself is a ghost and the child ends up helping him, completely reversing the man’s expectations.
Did you know … ?
Situational irony is used in many different forms of writing, including novels, short stories, plays, and movie scripts. It is often used to set up a twist or surprise for the audience.
What are real-life examples of situational irony?
This video explains situational irony and gives one example of how it can sometimes be based on expectations that come out of stereotyping.
Like most forms of irony, people often get confused about what is and isn’t situational irony.
In 2020, I hope more people understand what irony means. Specifically situational irony.
— Mel 'Spicy Nugg' (@rawrsnacks) December 18, 2019
Me: I really dislike being the center of attention and public speaking terrifies me.
Student: …but you're a teacher.
Me: Yes. That's what we call situational irony.
— Rachael Waldburger (@RewriteAgain) April 30, 2019
What other words are related to situational irony?
True or False?
A police station being robbed is an example of situational irony.
How to use situational irony in a sentence
It may be fun and it may get them paid, until oversaturation ruins our sense for irony and destroys the market for it.
Deep, situational, and emotional jokes based on what is relevant and has a POINT!
The irony did not escape one local, Laith Hathim, as he stood and watched the newly minted refugees make their way into Mosul.Has the Kurdish Victory at Sinjar Turned the Tide of ISIS War?|Niqash|December 27, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The irony has thinned with the economy, perhaps: Who can really afford just to pretend to DIY today?Glenn Beck Is Now Selling Hipster Clothes. Really.|Ana Marie Cox|December 20, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The root of the word irony is in the Greek eironeia, “liar.”Up to a Point: They Made Me Write About Lena Dunham|P. J. O’Rourke|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
This unreasoning, feminine obstinacy so wrought upon him that he permitted himself a smile and a lapse into irony and banter.St. Martin's Summer|Rafael Sabatini
Today her irony was concealed, but, like a carefully-covered fire, he knew it was burning still.Bella Donna|Robert Hichens
Barrington winced a little, for he recognized the irony in the failing voice, but he rose and moved towards the bed.Winston of the Prairie|Harold Bindloss
As you will see, I was unable to end my letter without a touch of impertinent irony, which proved how much in love I still was.Camille (La Dame aux Camilias)|Alexandre Dumas, fils
Ovid looked a bit doubtful, but Scattergood's voice was so interested, so bland, that any suspicion of irony was allayed.Scattergood Baines|Clarence Budington Kelland