Essay about The Necklace

Essay about The Necklace

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"We want what we can't have": This renowned adage has been the cold reply of many parents to their sobbing children as they walk out of the toy store. At the time, the heartbroken children might not fully grasp the words of their parents, but as they grow up they will understand that the well known adage holds true to its meaning. Almost everybody has experienced this feeling, whether it is as young children or as wise adults. Examples of this noted proverb is evident both in print and on screen. Now, since this is the case with most people around the world, it is not difficult to see how this byword applies to Guy de Maupassant's short story "The Necklace." Its protagonist, Mathilde Loisel, longing for a lavish lifestyle rather than her middle class way of life, falls under the spell of an priceless diamond. Dealing with her fate, some of Mathilde's strong character traits soon become apparent. Examining these attributes, we discover that Mathilde Loisel definitely has a negative personality.
The first of many character traits of Mathilde Loisel that Maupassant makes evident in the "The Necklace" is greed. She longs for a better life, one in which all her wildest dreams are transformed into reality. This rapacity causes her to drift away from her lifestyle and come back wanting more than she has or can afford. The voraciousness that consumes her whole way of life is truly a sign of inner weakness, a weakness she has for wealth and beauty. She would get lost in her own little fantasy world where everything was just pristine and perfect, with things she knew she would never be able to afford. She would daydream of "silent antechambers hung with Oriental tapestry, lit by tall bronze candelabra, and of the t...


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... These attributes eventually lead to her collapse. Ironically, the very woman whose life was highlighted by dreams of great wealth and beauty transforms into an aging woman with very little of either. Because of her negative traits, she was never able to fully enjoy the life she had. Moreover, she reached for the luxury, glitz, and glamour, but she reached too far and fell into a deeper state of poverty. It's also ironic how she was duped by a fake diamond, when she had always been dreaming of jewels and riches. Once one loses something important in life, it can be nearly impossible to get it back. Mathilde Loisel found this out the very hard way after she fell for the false promises of a glimmering rock.

Works Cited
Maupassant, Guy de. "The Necklace." Literature and Its Writers. Eds.
Charters, Ann and Samuel, New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2001: 451-57.

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