Maupassant’s The Necklace Essay

1599 words - 6 pages

Mathilde Loisel lived the life of a painfully distressed woman, who always believed herself worthy of living in the upper class. Although Mathilde was born into the average middle class family, she spent her time daydreaming of her destiny for more in life... especially when it came to her financial status. Guy de Maupassant’s short story, “The Necklace”, tells a tale of a vain, narcissistic housewife who longed for the aristocratic lifestyle that she believed she was creditable for. In describing Mathilde’s self-serving, unappreciative, broken and fake human behaviors, de Maupassant incorporates the tragic irony that ultimately concludes in ruining her.
Mathilde lives in an illusive world where her desires do not meet up to the reality of her life. She yearns for the status of being upper class, and she believes that her beauty and charm are worthy of much more. Mathilde spends her life doing everything in her power to create the dream life she has always imagined, to be beautiful, rich, and admired. Her husband provided her with a well-off lifestyle that she neglected and treated poorly due to her selfishness and greediness, and took advantage of his hard work at the first chance possible. When presented with the invitation to the party, she immediately rejects the request due to her fear of others judging her “middle class appearance”. But her loving husband offers her the hard earned money he had been saving up so she can treat herself to a brand new dress for the party. Her actions are centered around the happiness of herself, and have no good intentions towards her husband or
her marriage, resulting unfortunately by portraying her true colors of being greedy and unappreciative of the little money her family had.
With her new dress and her borrowed diamond necklace, her appearance matches the reality of her life for the first time. She receives admiration and attention from not only the men, but also from the women of the party. In just these few hours she feels as if her life is finally as it should be, although she knows deep down that appearance was more of a scheme than it was truth. Her wealth and class was simply a hoax, and she had many people (including herself) deceived. Throughout “The Necklace”, Mathilde proves her cheated personality by looking down on the average life she has, and only looking up to the luxurious lifestyle of the wealthy. She collects a pleasure from being acknowledged by others for the character that she has untruthfully put on. As we learn that the borrowed diamond necklace is fake, we also begin to infer that Mathilde is not any more authentic than the imitation jewelry that she cannot even call her own. Like herself, the necklace is beautiful but worthless.
In contrast to Mathilde’s greediness, she is forced to learn that the power of these material items may be her desired interest, but she cannot afford to let her craving for wealth take control of her life. After the purchase of the replacement...

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