The Necklace

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The Necklace by Guy de Maupassant.
How does the writer try to make the character of Madame Loisel interesting for the reader in “The Necklace”? The Necklace is a self-contained French story with a surprise ending. It is structured into narrative and four dialogues. The writer uses literary devices such as peripeteia, poetic justice, a twist ending and descriptive writing to make the story interesting for the reader. Everything centres on the twist ending, but the effectiveness depends on the events leading up to it and more importantly, on the characters involved. The writer makes the character of Mme Loisel interesting for the reader by (i) the way she is presented up the loss of the necklace, (ii) her relationship with her husband up the this time, (iii) the changes after the loss of the necklace and (iv) the use of language. At the beginning of the story the reader is told that Mme Loisel is a “pretty delightful girl” who by some “error or Fate” was born to very minor civil servants. Whilst they were not rich, they were not penniless. However, Mme Loisel was “unhappy all the time.” We learn that even though she was pretty delightful to look at she didn’t seem to have a pretty delightful character. She was vain, frivolous and sad. “… She had no fine dresses, no jewellery, nothing. And that was all she cared about.” This gives the reader an interest in her but not for the right reasons. She comes across as a little spoilt and ungrateful, but that all changes after the loss of the necklace. In the story Mme Loisel she settles with marrying a Minister of Education not because she loves him but because of his place in society. He is a kind, hard-working and honourable man but she thinks he’s dull and unsophisticated. I think she is ungrateful to him because he did get the invitation for her to the party and instead of thanking him she “tossed the invitation peevishly on the table” and said, “What earthly use is that to me?” Their relationship interests the...
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