What setting has been used in the short story “The Little Match Girl” by Hans Christian Andersen? What is its significance?
The story “The Little Match Girl” is set against the backdrop of a New Year’s Eve. It is a chilly winter night, the last night of the year when a poor girl, failed in her attempt to sell the match sticks, sits on the ground, sees the things of her dreams as visions in the light of her match sticks and finally freezes to death. The place is unnamed though. The year is also not mentioned. Even the protagonist of the story, the poor little girl goes unnamed. This is probably a deliberate attempt from the author to make the story universal in its appeal.
The cold winter night represents the desolate and wretched state of the little match girl. The New Year’s Eve is indicative of the new beginning of the girl’s life after death.