The Necklace By Guy De Maupassant Essay

The Necklace By Guy De Maupassant Essay

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Guy De Maupassant’s, “The Necklace” is a short story about a woman whose life is not what she feels she deserves. The woman, Mathilda, lives in an illusory world where appearances, objects, and associations have life changing powers. Each three of Mathilda’s “life changing powers” will touch on the themes listed; that it can be dangerous to be obsessed with materialistic things, be appreciative of what you have, and don’t be deceitful to others or yourself. Maupassant was influenced by the schools of realism and naturalist. If someone was to read Maupassant’s short story, “The Necklace” they would observe the influence of realism since this fictional story is about a realistic middleclass household in the 1870’s. Mathilda in the story desires these “life changing powers” to escape the middle class life she has been burdened with. Mathilda believes herself to be a gem of a woman that deserves only the most fancy of things, but sadly she finds herself married to a middle class store clerk and there are no oriental tapestries or elegant balls within that house. Mathilda’s husband, Monsieur Loisel, gives Mathilda a ball invitation, thus giving Mathilda the chance to disguise herself as a lady of higher class. To finish her disguise she borrows from her friend, Madam Forestier, a necklace. She attends the ball, finally receiving the feelings she always thought she deserved. Mathilda loses the necklace and decides to pay for a new one for her friend which delivers her into a deeper state of poverty which she is forced to live the rest of her days only to find out the irony, the necklace she borrowed was a fake. Mathilda’s fate sealed by her obsession with appearances, objects, and associations.
Mathilda’s obsession with appearances is...


... middle of paper ...


...rrounded by angels and you too an angel, that is the kind of thought process Mathilda has. The envious are blind to the true pursuit of happiness due to the fact that they are more obsessed with the affairs of others and their possessions. Maupassant’s use of Mathilda’s weakness for associating others to this standard of class is probably being critical of the France during the Franco-Prussian War.
Guy De Maupassant’s story “The Necklace” shows his readers that it can be dangerous to be obsessed with materialistic things, be appreciative of what you have, and don’t be deceitful to others or yourself. He express these things through Mathilda’s belief that appearances, objects, and associations have life changing powers. These things have little worldly power but to Mathilda meant everything and is reason that she doomed herself to poverty when she sought out riches.

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