6 February 2006
Analysis of "The Necklace"
Many women dream of living a rich life, full of luxury, riches and servants. In the short story "The Necklace" by Guy de Maupassant, a middle-class woman named Madame Loisel desires that life style very much. In "The Necklace" Madame Loisel's vain desires cause many conflicts and her ultimate downfall.
One small conflict in the story is Madame Loisel vs. her husband. He is always trying to make his wife satisfied and she never appreciates him or their way of life. De Maupassant makes this clear in the beginning by telling the reader that "she let herself be married to a little clerk" (p77). The word "let" indicates her unhappiness with her marriage to him. He works hard to get an invitation to the Minister's ball and his wife only gets upset because she has nothing fancy to wear. He uses his money he had saved for a vacation with friends to buy her a fancy dress. After his wife loses an expensive looking necklace, Monsieur Loisel risks everything to take out loans that in order to buy a real diamond necklace to replace the lost one. He works two and sometimes three jobs for ten years and lives in poverty to pay back the loans for the necklace his wife lost. He ends up suffering because of her vanity and foolish desires.
The main conflict in the story, Madame Loisel vs. herself, is caused by Madame Loisel's desire for fine things and for fitting in with high society. She wants high society to recognize her beauty and charm. In the beginning of the story the author tells us that "She would so have liked to please, to be envied, to be charming, to be sought after" (p78). Her obsession with wanting to be pleasing, envied, and charming eats away at her and makes her become her own antagonists because she causes her own downfall. Her husband, knowing of her desires, works hard to get them an invitation to the ministerial ball. Most of the people at the ball are members of high...