Desiree's Baby By Kate Chopin Essay

1823 words - 8 pages

Kate Chopin wrote many short stories, including Desiree's Baby. Desiree's Baby was written in the nineteenth century, a period of time in which society was patriarchal. As Mary Donaldson-Evans states, in the 19th century "women were objects of erotic delight, intended for pleasure and adornment for the male, and their physical beauty [was] paramount." Chopin's stories reflect on the period of time which she lived. Chopin wrote about men that were "bitter about woman...and are suffused by a general misanthropy and more specific misogyny" (Taylor). Chopin writes of women as the subject of the story, rather than the object by expressing her experiences in her life. Chopin focuses on "women's ...view middle of the document...

" She was vulnerable, ingenious and naïve just like a baby. Desiree's first word, "dada", is reflective of her need for paternal love and validation-rendering her move vulnerable to Armand. Desiree marries Armand and moves to at L'Abri which "was a sad looking place." Even so she is blinded by her false idea of love. Whenever she speaks about Armand her "face becomes suffused with a glow that [is] happiness itself." She is "so happy; that is frightens her" because, she cannot imagine that she deserves happiness or joy. Her happiness, her sadness, and all her emotions are content upon on Armand. Whenever he "frowns she trembles...when he smiles, she asked no greater blessing of G-d." This depicts how her entire self worth and happiness is based on how he feels, further suggesting her co-dependence. "A strange, an awful change in her husband's manner, which she dared not to ask him to explain" due to fear to anger him. In a normal marriage, the couple fights, argues or at least has some sort of communication that is expressive of the other's feelings. As evinced, her marriage with Armand is not a healthy one, they lack communication. More frequently "he absented himself from home; and when there, avoided her presence and that of the child, without excuse." "Desiree was miserable enough to die", because she did not understand "the change in her husband's manner"; where it was coming from." She has lack of self worth, without Armand she is "miserable enough to die". One hot afternoon...as the baby laid asleep" Desiree's "blood turned to ice in her veins, and clammy moisture gathered upon her face"; because, she sees something in the baby that she had been too oblivious to see before. Desiree called Armand "in a voice that he must have stabbed him", he ignored her at first. She then sparingly asked him what was wrong with the baby, he responded very coldly to her; "it means the child is not white; it means you are not white." For Armand his name and his reputation is worth more than anything he had ever felt for Desiree. Desiree desperately tried to cover "this accusation which meant for her nerved her with unwonted courage to deny it." She did not want to face her biggest fear, besides abandonment, to stand up to Armand and tell him he is wrong. That would damage his status which is unacceptable due to the fact a man in society in those times were the head of the household. As a typical reaction "she was like a stone image: silent, white, and motionless." Even thought Armand just insulted her, she wants to stay with him, which portrays how she is willing to take more denigration from him. So asks him repeatedly "do you want me to go?" and is stabbed by the hardest response; "yes, I want you to go." It is hard for her to leave due to her codependence, but supposedly leaves to her mother's house.Armand is malevolently narcissistic, unfaithful, atrocious, and Satanic in appearance. When Armand saw Desiree, he "had fallen in love with her." That...

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