The Consequences of One’s Own Dignity

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SaRae Dueitt
English Composition II
Nov 5, 2012
Critical Analysis Essay
The Consequences of One’s Own Dignity
“The Necklace” by Guy de Maupassant is a short story of a middle-class couple, a prideful woman named Mathilde Loisel and her down-to-earth husband, Mr. Loisel, who live in Paris, France. Maupassant’s novels are commonly known by the simplicity of the title. (Organ) Maupassant likes to emphasize an element for the reader to view as significant. (Organ) Mathilde lives her life beyond the means of reality and fantasizes that her world is full of wealth and luxuries. She likes to buy and borrow unnecessary items to satisfy her excessive needs. She has no respect for her hard-working husband who does everything in his power to provide her with the material things she wants. The story explains how her self-centeredness forces her and her husband into debt for ten long years. The morals, characters, and setting are all very important features leading to this story’s distressed ending.

Maupassant’s main moral lesson in “The Necklace” is that no one can predict what tomorrow will bring. When life changes unexpectedly, handling the situation in a careful and calm way and being offensive about changes in life may lead to greater challenges in the future. It is important to acknowledge the values that are needed to live and work because it will help prioritize the decisions in life, instead of always being focused on the desire to possess something. Materialistic items can bring happiness but only for a short period of time. Having values like love, honesty, respect, discipline, determination, and generosity helps to keep the happiness alive. She receives the necklace from Madame Forestier because she thinks it will make her look wealthy and important to others, and it does, but only for one night. Her sacrifice of borrowing a necklace for this one night forced her into a life of poverty. Poverty was the result caused by her lying and loss of hope. However,...
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