Literary Techniques

Topics: Short story, Miscegenation, Literary technique Pages: 6 (1627 words) Published: May 11, 2014
Comparing Literary Analysis of Kate Chopin’s “A Pair of Silk Stockings” And “Desiree’s Baby”
Kate Chopin’s “A Pair of Silk Stockings" and “Desiree’s Baby” are both great stories. Both literature give readers the smooth and easy transition throughout the story, and then leave the readers with disappointing and jaw dropping details in the end. Both of Chopin’s stories portray typical women who have different wants and needs and emphasize their continued life struggles. In “A Pair of Silk Stockings,” fifteen dollars has been enough to bring Mrs. Sommers back to her past and enjoy the life she used to have. Although, the items that she has purchased will stay with her, that does not change the fact that the moment she leaves the cable car she will have to go back to her family and face the life that she is trying to escape from. In Chopin’s story “Desiree’s Baby,” Armand express his love for his wife Desiree, not displaying any signs racism. He made it clear that her unknown past does not matter to him. All of that changed the moment they had a son who show traces of African ancestry. Armand rejected Desiree, so the devastated young mother left L’Abri with her son and both of them were never have seen again. In both stories, the author uses many literary techniques to express how pride and selfishness can turn someone into a different person. Chopin’s symbolism is very rich in description and filled with hidden meanings, which makes both of the stories very extraordinary. The first part of the story makes clear about Mrs. Sommers love for her Family that has changed the moment she temporarily leaves her reality in order to live and feel her past. In this short story, Chopin presents the message clearly to her readers how much Mrs. Sommers wants to escape from reality. In “A Pair of Silk Stockings” the fifteen dollars she accumulates represents her “better days,” (2) which is the past life she has been missing. The silk stockings are used many times to symbolize luxuries, and the different shades of stockings are made visible by Chopin to represent life pleasures, freedom, and happiness “some lavender, some all black” (2). Mrs. Sommers abandoning her present life is clear when Chopin makes the statement of exchanging “her cotton stockings” (2) to her “new silk ones” (2). In the story, author uses symbols significant on how the protagonist used to live her life. She uses the “shabby old” (2) to describe her shopping bag, which resembles to her current life status. Gloves and high-priced magazines represent glamour where there are wide choices of “pleasant things,” (3). Mrs. Sommers realizes that her life before was better than what she thought it was. Narrator expresses the conclusion of what Mrs. Sommers thinks about her life before: “The damask was even more spotless than it had seemed” (4). Lastly, the cable car represents her ride towards her better days. Author sadly exposes the protagonists’ thoughts of not wanting to return home, wishing for the cable car to never stop and keep going “go on and on with her forever” (5). All the symbolism in the story expresses Mrs. Sommers longing for her past life, her “better days” (1) which can be no longer part of her future. Chopin’s use of her symbols tried to give the readers the clearest message possible. The brilliant use of symbolism in “Desiree’s Baby” sends message to the readers about the sensitivity of the subject racism back in the days, when the story is set. Chopin uses colors to tell the story of the characters’ backgrounds. The Caucasian race was presented by the “yellow nurse,” (2) and she use “La Blanche's little quadroon boys” (3) to represent mixed race or bi-racial. L’Abri and Madame Valmonde are also used to symbolize human feelings and behavior. The L’Abri, is the plantation owned by Aubigny family. The L’Abri symbolizes sadness and Chopin elaborates that when Madame Valmonde visits Desiree and describes the plantation as “a sad looking place” (2), with...
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