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“The Necklace” or “Madame Bovary in Miniature”

“The Necklace” Literary Analysis

Dec 20, 2019 at Literature Essays

“The Necklace” and “Madame Bovary in Miniature”

“The Necklace” is a well-known short story that was written by a famous French short story writer Guy de Maupassant. In fact, the story is also called “Madame Bovary in Miniature”. The story represents the description of the life of a displeased bourgeois woman, who dreams of glamour and wealth. The first publishing of “The Necklace” was on February 17, 1884. The author published it in the French language in a French daily newspaper which was called Le Gaulois. The choice of the newspaper was not fortuitous or random since Guy de Maupassant worked for Le Gaulois as an editor (“The Necklace” n.pag.).

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The main characters of this absurd story are M. Loisel, Mme. Jeanne Forestier, M. Georges Ramponneau and the first jeweler. Undoubtedly, Mathilde Loisel is the central character of the story. Moreover, one can even call her the main culprit of the events that happened to her and her husband. Therefore, she is, obviously, a good character to analyze. In fact, she is the only one to be blamed for the loss of the so-called jewelry and for her fear, to tell the truth. All the troubles and terrible poverty that she and her husband had to face and overcome were caused by Mathilde’s desire to live a beautiful, fabulous life. Of course, she could go to the ball without any necklaces or other jewelry. The dress and shoes, in fact, were enough to be ready to attend the event. However, she wanted to make an outward show for other guests. She wanted to show how gorgeous she was and be admired by those people who surrounded her at the ball. Mathilde’s thirst for a beautiful life and wonderful appearance was one of her traits. Mathilde shows her thirst for glamour and being appraised and desired by other people by the means of her daydreams, constant complaints on life and desire to look better than others. Besides, she talks much about it. The author tells readers about Mathilde Loisel’s appearance:

Mme. Loisel was a success. She was the prettiest of them all, elegant, gracious, smiling, and mad with joy. All the men were looking at her, inquiring her name, asking to be introduced (Maupassant 53).

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According to the fact that Mathilde Loisel plays such a significant role in the short story by the French author, she is, obviously, a round character. Her role is not simple; she is represented as a complex personality. Besides, the woman is a dynamic character. She experiences some particular changes during the story. All the changes in Mathilde happen when she realizes that her husband and she have to return the diamond necklace which, surely, costs a great amount of money. On the one hand, the main character seems to become even worse when she is poor. Now she understands that her middle-class life was not as bad as it ever seemed to her. She realizes this because now she can compare her extremely poor life with the middle-class life that she always hated. Of course, the new life is even more uncomfortable and difficult for Mathilde. Moreover, she needs to do all the household chores. She even starts behaving with people in a rude manner and tries to save every penny. In addition, the readers know that Mathilde was a very beautiful and attractive woman; however, her amazing appearance vanishes within her poor life. On the other hand, in such circumstances of living, the main character of “The Necklace” at least does some activities. Therefore, her new life is not as boring as it was before. She has no more time to daydream about a fantastic, careless and gorgeous lifestyle. Besides, it is naturally that she has lost the last hope for living such a life. One could not but mention that Mathilde finally stops being useless. To sum up the consequences of Mathilde’s disclosed not only the bad sides of Mathilde, but also the good ones. Therefore, it is hard to claim that Mathilde is definitely a good or bad character. There is no doubt that it is difficult to like her because of such a greedy nature. However, she can be understood since everyone comprehends that being unable to decide anything by one’s own is quite difficult for person. Her close people, parents, and husband always made decisions for her.

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All in all, one can claim that Mme. Mathilde Loisel is the central character of Guy de Maupassant’s story. In fact, it is possible to imagine the story without any other character. However, Mme. Loisel plays the most important role in the story. Her character contributes greatly to the work as a whole since she is the source of all the problems and events that take place in this literary work. Importantly, the author does not judge the greedy woman. However, he does not support her as well. In fact, it shows all the maturity of the author and a high level of writing skills. Maupassant does not make any clear conclusions about the main character of his story, giving readers the opportunity to analyze everything and make their own conclusion.

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