Painted Veil Essay

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Topics: Love, Marriage
4/1/2013 Tobias Korner | F3B | The Painted Veil | An Evolution of Kitty Fane |

The Painted Veil | An Evolution of Kitty Fane |

An Evolution of Kitty Fane
“It was hopeless, it was no good to try, she was a slut.” This one phrase completely epitomizes Kitty Fane’s abject, egocentric nature in The Painted Veil. In this essay the supposed divergence of Kitty’s behavior and attitude shall be explored, and abolished as a mere illusion. Somerset Maugham created Kitty Fane to be a selfish, un-loyal wife that goes on an enlightening journey in cholera stricken Mei-Tan Fu, and changes into a caring, loving wife that rues her infidelity and self-indulgence, and who becomes almost pitiful in her attempt to reconciliate with Walter. Although when Kitty returns to Hong Kong, she again gives into her sinful nature and sleeps with Charlie Townsend again, revealing that Kitty has not changed at all, but was under the impression that she had done.

The first instance of Kitty Fane’s selfish nature was the reason why she married Walter Fane. Although she thought him to be humourless and overly serious <quote>, to get away from the influence of her mother, Mrs.Garstin, as she greately despised the fact that Kitty had not married yet, even though she was past her ‘flush of maidenhood’, which is what Mrs.Garstin thought a perfect woman should do. Another reason for Kitty to want to escape her mother is because her younger sister, Dorothy, got married before, which brang her quite a lot of shame. The reason why Kitty’s ideals to marry Walter were so vain was because she married purely for her own benefit, and she still married Walter even though she did not love or even care for him <quote>.

When Kitty and Walter arrive in Hong Kong, as newly weds, Kitty quickly realises that Walter is a dry and dull person, who bores and almost irritates her with his frequent tokens of love and affection. In Charles Townsend she finds a man whom she cannot

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