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The Mystery of the Mastery Much of life results from choices we make. How we meet every circumstance, and also how we allow those circumstances to affect us dictates our life. In Anton Chekhov’s “The Lady With the Little Dog," we are given a chance to take a look inside two characters not unlike ourselves. As we are given insight into these two people, their character and nature unfolds, presenting us with people we can relate to. Even if we fail to grasp the fullness of a feeling or circumstance, we are still touched on our own level, evidencing the brilliance of Chekhov’s writing. In the exposition of the story, Chekhov immediately delves into his character generation, introducing us to both Anna Sergeevna and Dmitri Gurov, the main players in the story. He also gives us a physical description of Anna, as well as a beginning presentation of Dmitri’s character. Of Anna, Chekhov writes, “…a young woman, not very tall, blond, in a beret, walking along the embankment; behind her ran a white spitz” (Chekhov 144). Of Dmitri he comments, “Gurov, who had already spent two weeks in Yalta…began to take an interest in new faces” (Chekhov 144). Chekhov immediately offers a feel for how each character will shape up to be, and presents a chance for us (the reader) to attach ourselves to these perhaps not-so-unique individuals. Without further ado, Chekhov expounds on his initial description of Dmitri through the next five paragraphs. We learn that he is almost forty, has three children and a wife, but that he is not happy at home. He married early, and is not in love with his wife. He outwardly proclaims extreme chauvinism towards women, but we learn that “in the company of men he was bored, ill at ease, with them he was taciturn and cold, but when he was among women, he felt himself free and knew what to talk about with them and how to behave; and he was at ease even being silent with them” (Chekhov 144). Through this description, Dmitri gains a soul and personality. He becomes a round, developed character with whom we can relate and identify ourselves. Even if we are not completely like Dmitri, his “normal” character helps us to identify ourselves with him in some way. Chekhov’s ability to define character and produce an effect in the reader is not limited only to the description and action provided in the story. He expertly weaves location and setting into the development of theme. “Setting is essential if the reader is to be given the opportunity to glimpse a truth about the internal life from the characters and the plot” (Charters 1008). The story begins in Yalta, obviously in warmer weather, which sets a happy tone for the exposition. However, once the couple meets, the weather begins to change. “A week had passed since they became acquainted. It was Sunday. Inside it was stuffy, but outside the dust flew in whirls, hats blew off” (Chekhov 146). Chekhov illustrates how the characters are developing through the change in the weather. In the beginning, when the relationship is mostly superficial, the sun is shining, and it’s a nice time for a stroll. However, as the adulterous relationship continues, the weather become tumultuous, foreshadowing the turmoil that will soon begin inside both Anna and Dmitri. After the lovers commit their adulterous deeds, “when they went out, there was not a soul on the embankment, the town with its cypresses looked completely dead…” (Chekhov 147), indicating the death inside both the lovers. There is no turning back at this point, and death may loom ahead. Through the environment the characters live in, we learn what they are going through, and understanding of the characters expand beyond mere words and actions. The brilliance of Chekhov’s writing cannot be overstated. In “The Lady with the Little Dog” there is an untypical depth to the relationship between Anna and Dmitri. While the plot itself may be little more than that of a soap opera, the development and depth to which the characters are taken is far beyond any afternoon television program. As Richard Ford says, Chekhov “concentrates [his] narrative attentions not on the conventional hot spots – sex, deceit, and what happens at the end – essay writing Cryptocurrency That Works Without Internet, mCoin Launches In Africa rather, by its precision, pacing, and decisions about what to tell, it directs our interest toward those flatter terrains of a love affair where we, being conventional souls, might overlook something important” (871). Sex, lies, and deceit do take place, but they are all off stage. Chekhov takes this critical time to develop character, showing us what is going on inside the souls of the adulterers, rather than sensationalizing on the outside events that are all too popular in today’s society (as essay on Lower-Income Americans Drive Up Consumer Sentiment in September as back when the story was written). Although Chekhov’s story is filled with complex issues of moral struggle and turmoil, it is a story we can all relate to. Everyone faces difficult decisions in life, and Chekhov brings the inner mayhem to light. Focus upon people rather than events impacts us in ways we cannot even describe. We are connected to the people in the story as we identify with the feelings and personalities of these fictional characters. “Everything that he [Gurov] found important, interesting, necessary, in which he was sincere and did not deceive himself, which constituted the core of his life, occurred in secret from others” (Chekhov 154). We are forced to reflect upon circumstances in our own lives, and all of life’s little nuances become significant once we realize that they affect the fiber of our being. Chekhov attracts “attention to mature feelings, to complicated human dilemmas, any part of which, were we to encounter them in our complex, headlong life with others, might evade even sophisticated notice” (Ford 869). We become more sensitive to human interaction, and begin to empathize with others, beyond the mere situation, and their deep inner struggles. Without the brilliant illustration of Chekhov’s characters, we would miss much of the meaning of the story. “The importance of being honest with your feelings” could be a theme in “The Lady with the Little Dog.” If Chekhov did not produce such dynamic, realistic characters, we might be insensitive to the true feelings of Anna and Dmitri. This character development is essential to understanding of the theme. “And only now, when his head was gray, had he really fallen in love as one ought to – for the first time in his life” (Chekhov 155). Chekhov tells the reader, “It’s not too late. ‘Even when [your] head [is] gray’ you can still find true love.” Once the reader has identified with the character, they begin to take the practice (and success) of the character to bear in their own life. The theme is fully digested, and creates inspiration in the reader to begin their own quest for truth. Charters, Ann, ed. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction . Compact 6 th ed. SMC sets aggressive environmental drive essay Bedford-St. Martin’s, 2002. Chekhov, Anton. “The Lady with the Little Dog.” Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An. Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th ed. Boston; Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2002. 143-155. Ford, Richard. “Why We Like Chekhov.” Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An. Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th ed. Boston; Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2002. 143-155. Christalyn Grantier ENG 104, Prof. C. Agatucci Midterm Literary Analysis Paper 4 November 2002. Plot vs. Point of View in Chopin's "Story of An Hour" Kate Chopin’s “Story of an Hour” tells the tale of an evolution of a character in a single hour. Chopin accomplishes this by using a specific point of view and unique plot to carry out her vision. These elements work together to create a theme that has the greatest impact on the reader. Ann Charters defines “point of view” as “the author’s choice of narrator for the story”(1009). “The Story of an Hour” is told from the viewpoint of a third-person concussions. This speaker is a “non-participant in the story” (Charters 1009). Never does the narrator include herself in the plot of “Hour.” Specifically, this speaker has only “limited omniscience” as she relates the story. According to Charters, a speaker with limited omniscience is able to know what is going on in the mind of a single character, but not have a full retirement in new 2018 book of, or chooses not to reveal to the readers, the minds of all the characters (Charters 1009). For example, the emotions and thoughts of Mrs. Mallard are fully described within the story. We see her grief, but also the thoughts of freedom that begin to come to her mind (Chopin 157-8). Because the narrator does not show all the aspects of the story, it allows the fact of her husband being alive to be a surprise (Chopin 158). The narrator, because he or she is not a member of the story, may be able to be trusted more by the reader than a person involved directly in the essay examples Iowa State golfer Celia Barquin Arozamena was ready to play through (Charters 1010). The narrator is considered more “objective” (Agatucci 4). The author, Kate Chopin, was a great admirer of Guy de Maupassant, a writer of the realist genre (Agatucci 4). Maupassant stated that “The writer’s goal is to reproduce this illusion of life faithfully…” (Maupassant 898). Chopin used a point of view in “Story of an Hour” very similar to that of Maupassant when he wrote “The Necklace.” The author’s factual account allows a reader to experience this “illusion of life”. According to Maupassant, a writer should find a new way of looking at a situation (Charters 523). Chopin, in attempting to imitate the genre embraced by this author, looked at a situation of the death of a husband in a unique way. She accomplished this by presenting the true feelings of a widow and contrasting those feelings with society’s beliefs. Working in the realistic genre, Chopin presented a more “disillusioned” view of life (Agatucci 4). Chopin did not portray the accepted norms of society. She did not state that the wife could not go on without her husband. By contrast, she viewed her story with a new concept, that of a wife feeling empowered to go on living because her husband was no longer alive. The thoughts and actions of these characters can be seen in the development of the plot. Point of view is how a reader is able to look into a story; the plot is the arrangement of the incidents themselves (Charter 1003, 1009). Charters defines plot as “the sequence of events in a story and their relation to one another as they develop and usually resolve a conflict”(1003). The sequences within this story are quite short because this story occurs in the course of a single hour. The conflict present in this story is all within the protagonist, “the main character of [the] narrative” (Charters 1051). Without the view which allows the reader to see inside the mind of Mrs. Mallard, the reader would not be aware of the true conflict. Without this insight, a reader might assume, like Mrs. Mallard’s sister, that the conflict of the wife was the grief associated with her husband’s death (Chopin 158). The point of view allows the reader to see the true conflict within the plot and to sense the freedom that is eventually embraced by the protagonist (Chopin 158). The life of the author seems to have an impact on the plot. Kate Chopin had a very similar experience as Mrs. Mallard in the tragic death of her father. Chopin’s father perished when she was young in a train accident (Chopin 157; and “Katherine Chopin”). Also, she did not begin writing until after her mother and husband had both passed away (“Katherine Chopin”). She herself stated that “If it were possible for my husband and my mother to come back to earth, I feel that I would unhesitatingly give up every thing that has come into my life since they left it and join my existence again with theirs. To do that, I would have to forget the past ten years of my growth -- my real growth” (O'Brien). This suggests Chopin sympathized with Mrs. Mallard, who had found new freedom in the death of a loved one (Chopin 158). Kate Chopin had a bicultural background. According to Contemporary Authorsthis author’s great-grandmother related stories of her ancestors, including those about “notorious infidels” (“Katherine Chopin”). This may have given Chopin confidence to explore topics not generally discussed by the society of her day. The plot itself has some very distinct characteristics that are of the literary realism genre. First, it is believable. Most people believe that heart disease and train accidents do exist (Chopin 157). Authors writing within this style often chose to look at the nature of human beings (Agatucci 3). The entire plot of “Story of An Hour” is that of describing the nature of the characters. The plot begins by depicting the reaction of Mrs. Mallard’s sister and Mr. Mallard’s friend (Chopin 157). The evolution of the emotional nature of Mrs. Mallard is described as she sits alone (Chopin157-158). Finally, we see the nature of society at that time, totally ignorant of the true feelings felt by the wife about her husband. Agatucci describes this impact on characters such as Mrs. Mallard as “ordinary people of contemporary times live it in society, caught up by social…forces” (3). The social forces of this time included, what could be referred to as society’s “repression” of women. Seyersted describes this time period as a society in which “a society where man makes the rules, woman is often kept in a state of tutelage and regarded as property or as a servant”. Seyersted quotes Chopin herself in saying, “As Mme. de Stael's Corinne is told: Whatever extraordinary gifts she may have, her duty and ‘her proper destiny is to devote herself to her husband and to the raising of her children’.” This type of society had a great impact on the plot of this story. The reader can better understand the situation of Mrs. Mallard. Her destiny was that of devoting herself to her husband. Even though she loved him and would weep upon seeing him dead, she welcomed the “procession of years that would belong to her absolutely” (Chopin 158). Maureen Anderson refers to Chopin as having an “authorial skill through which she elegantly addresses society's flaws” present in all her works. In conclusion, both the point of view and the plot of “Story of an Hour” work to create the theme of this story. Theme is “a generalization about the meaning of a story” essay writing What Cooking on a Keto Diet Really Looks Like 1013). The theme of Chopin’s story is how After years of pain, David Wright receives standing ovation in emotional return to Citi Field essay society was at that time of the true feelings experienced by repressed women. First, the point of view allows us to see the inner emotions expressed by Mrs. Mallard. Without a speaker with limited omniscience, a reader would never realize what was truly being felt by the protagonist, and the theme would be lost. Because the narrator is outside the story and could be considered more objective, the reader is more likely to believe that these feelings experienced by Mrs. Mallard are true. If Mrs. Mallard or the sister had told the story, readers would have gotten two different, biased accounts. The point of view allows a reader to feel that this really could have happened, an “illusion of life”, thereby making the theme more powerful. The plot allows Mrs. Mallard to explore her feelings of repression and finally accept the fact that she can rejoice in the freedom of being a widow (Chopin 158). The surprise ending, the return of Mr. Mallard and the death of Mrs. Mallard, gives the reader a chance to understand the ironic beliefs of society (Chopin 158). The irony can be seen in the totally contradictory feelings of the protagonist and society. Mrs. Mallard, upon seeing her husband alive, was suddenly thrown back into a situation in which she had “thought with a shudder that life might be long” (Chopin 158). It was this great shock and grief that led to her death, not the “joy that kills” (Chopin 158). Agatucci, Cora. (Professor of English, Humanities Dept., Central Oregon Community College). “Emergence of the Short Story: Literary Romanticism and Realism- Poe and Maupassant; Myth Lit. Theory”. In-Class Presentation, English 104: Introduction to Literature-Fiction, Central Oregon Community College [Bend, OR]. Fall 2002. Handout. Anderson, Maureen. “Unraveling the Southern Pastoral Tradition: A New Look at Kate Chopin's At Fault .” Southern Literary Journal 34.1: 1-14. Rpt. Ebsco Host Academic Search Elite2001; Article No. 6124416. Charters, Ann. “Appendix 3: The Elements of Fiction.” The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact 6 th Edition. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 1003-1015. Chopin, Kate. “The Story of an Hour”. [First published 1894.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th Edition. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 157-158. “Katherine Chopin, 1851-1904.” [New Entry: 28 Apr. 1998.] Contemporary Authors Online. The Gale Group, 2000. Rpt. Gale Literature Resource Center [Online Subscription Database]. The Gale Group, 2002. Maupassant, Guy de. “The Writer’s Goal”. [First published 1888.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th Edition. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 896-898. O'Brien, Sharon. “Bored Wives and Jubilant Widows”. The New York Times 30 Dec. 1990, late. ed., sec. 7: 10. Rpt. Lexis-Nexis. 28 Oct. 2002. Seyersted, Per. [Excerpt from] Kate Chopin: A Critical Biography. Louisiana State University Press, 1969. 246. Rpt. World Literature Criticism SupplementVol.1. Gale Literature Resource Center [Online Subscription Database]. The Gale Group, 2002. Jennifer Stewart ENG 104, Prof. C. Agatucci Revised Midterm Literary Analysis Paper 25 November 2002. Literary Analysis of Maupassant's "The Necklace" One of Guy De Maupassant's literary influences was Gustave Flaubert, who taught him to write. Flaubert's teaching principles suggested that the "writer must look at everything to find some aspect of it that no one has yet seen or expressed," thus providing the reader a new or different view of life (Charters, "Maupassant" header 523). Maupassant succeeded in being a writer "who had entered into himself and looked out upon life through his own being and with his own eyes," according to Kate Chopin (861). He wrote "realistic fiction" and greatly influences writers still (Charters, "Brief History" 998). "The Necklace" was written in the 19 th century Literary Realism period. The story focuses on "everyday events, lives, [and the] relationships of middle/lower class," and it provides a glimpse of normal people and how they are influenced by "social and economic forces" (Agatucci 4). The meaning of " The Necklace " is developed through the depiction of the characters and the plot of the story. Maupassant stated that the story is not only a form of entertainment but a tool "to make us think and to make us understand the deep and hidden meaning of events" ("Writer's" 896). I found that the theme of "The Necklace" exhibits the importance of honesty and being happy with who you are. It shows that things are not always what they seem, material things do not define the person and that money cannot solve all problems and may in fact create them. Donald Adamson describes the main character, Mathilde, as a "poor but an honest woman," I disagree with his opinion. Mathilde's dishonesty changes her life and forces her to know "the horrible existence of the needy" (Maupassant 528). "The Necklace" is a story about Mathilde, a miserable and selfish wife of a "little clerk" who suffers "from the poverty of her dwelling," and dreams of a rich and elegant lifestyle where she is beautiful and "envied" (Maupassant, "Necklace", 524). This conflict within Mathilde drives her throughout the story. Her dedicated husband, M. Loisel, is content with their life and wishes to make her happy despite everything he must endure. After obtaining an invitation to a ball that was an "awful trouble to get," he eagerly takes it home to his wife who is ungrateful because she does not feel that she has anything suitable to wear (525). After having a new dress made, Mathilde can't imagine going to the ball without "a single jewel" so she borrows a beautiful necklace from her friend Mme. Forestier (526). The day of the ball proved to be everything Mathilde imagined, but it all ends when she loses the necklace. Although M. Loisel and Mathilde find a replacement necklace, they spend "ten years in grinding poverty until they finally paid off their debt," only to discover that the necklace was not a diamond necklace but just "mere costume jewellery" (Adamson). Charters defines plot as the "sequence of events in a story and their relation to one another as they develop and usually resolve a conflict" ("Elements" 1003). In the exposition of "The Necklace," Maupassant provides a detailed "character portrait" of Mathilde and offers some important details about M. Loisel (Adamson). It is obvious that conflict exists inside of Mathilde. She feels she is too good for the life she leads. She is unhappy with who she is and dreams of being someone else. On the contrary, M. Loisel is happy and satisfied to come home to his wife who prepares him an "economical but tasty meal" (Smith). Mathilde is very materialistic and believes that riches would end her suffering, she won't even visit a rich friend and "former classmate at the convent" because she is so jealous and envious. The rising action of the plot begins when M. Loisel presents the invitation to Mathilde. This presentation only aggravates the conflict that exists within Mathilde and she cannot imagine going to the ball in any of her old dresses. Mathilde sheds two pitiful tears and M. Loisel "quickly decides to sacrifice his savings" so that she may purchase a new dress (Smith). Mathilde is not satisfied essay writing What Cooking on a Keto Diet Really Looks Like just a new dress! She believes it would be a disgrace to show up at the ball without jewelry. She must not "look poor among other women who are rich" (Maupassant 526). So she borrows a "superb necklace of diamonds" from Mme. Forestier (526). In this passage Maupassant convinces the reader that the necklace is real diamonds; "he misleads the reader into believing that the necklace really is valuable" (Adamson). This creates more excitement for the climax of the story when Mathilde loses the necklace on her way home from the ball. M. Loisel responds by going to search for the necklace to no avail. He does not find the necklace and instructs Mathilde to lie to Mme. Forestier and tell her that she has broken the necklace and will need time to have it repaired. If Mathilde would have chosen to be honest at this point, Mme. Forestier would have told her that the necklace was only "paste…worth at most five hundred francs" (530). Instead they find a suitable replacement necklace that costs thirty-six thousand francs. After one week M. Loisel "had aged five years," and was forced to use his inheritance and borrow money "risking his signature without even knowing if he could meet it" to buy the replacement necklace (Maupassant, "Necklace" 528). Upon returning the necklace to her friend, Mathilde discovered the "horrible existence of the needy" (528). They "dismissed their servant" and gave up their flat. Mathilde became a "woman of impoverished households - strong and hard and rough" (529). She was forced to haggle and defend their "miserable money" (529). It took them ten years to pay off all of their debts. Mathilde was no longer pretty and charming, she now had "frowsy hair… and red hands" (529). These trials and tribulations represent the falling action of the story, where the conflict is moving toward a resolution (Charters, "Elements" 1005). Guy De Maupassant's narrator and Donald Adamson use the term hero when describing Mme. Loisel, but I do not feel that her actions were heroic. She was just fulfilling the duties that were always expected of her, but that she felt she was too good for. I do not believe that dishonesty is a trait of a hero. Perhaps if Mathilde would have been honest with Mme. Forestier from the beginning about losing the necklace, she would have explained that it was not real diamonds and they could have avoided all of the hardships they endured. Some may argue that Mathilde was heroic because she took responsibility for her mistake, gave up her lifestyle and worked to repay the debt. It was admirable that she did not expect her husband to bear the burden alone. The conclusion of "The Necklace" undoubtedly contains an element of surprise. Mathilde discovers that the necklace was not made of diamonds, but imitation gems. This devastating discovery leaves many unanswered questions. Maupassant's narrator uses limited omniscient narration by describing Mathilde with her thoughts. She is a round character capable of choosing alternative responses to the situations presented to her (Charters, "Elements" 1007). I believe Mathilde is both a dynamic and a static character. She is dynamic because she does undergo a significant change and takes on the duties of a poverty stricken housewife. Yet she remains static in that she is still not content with her life and dreams of that "gay evening long ago, of that ball where she had been so beautiful" (Maupassant, "Necklace" 529). Her husband M. Loisel is also a round character, the "play and pull of his actions and responses to situations" could be observed throughout the story (Charters, "Elements" 1007). When Mathilde is unhappy with the invitation to the ball he offers to buy her a new dress. When she wants jewelry he recommends borrowing from Mme. Forestier and when she loses the necklace he collects the money to replace it. Although M. Loisel does experience some change, he is a static character. I believe he is content and happy with his life throughout the story. He continues to work hard and stays dedicated to Mathilde. The themes of "The Necklace" are evident throughout the plot of the story. If only Mathilde would have been honest with Mme. Forestier and happy with who she was, she could have prevented the whole ordeal. Her misfortune proves to the reader that honesty is the best choice. Maupassant warns the reader of the afflictions that vanity may cause. There was no need for Mathilde to wear a diamond necklace; she was too concerned about what others would think of her. The fake diamond necklace proves that things are not always what they seem, although Mme. Forestier appeared to be rich, she chose or may have only been able to afford costume jewelry. I believe "The Necklace" serves as a reminder of the importance of being happy and proud of who we are regardless of the amount of material things or money that we possess. Adamson, Donald. ""The Necklace': Overview." Reference Guide to World Literature. 2 nd ed. Ed. Lesley Henderson. St. James Press, 1995. Rpt. Gale Literature Resource Center. [Outline Subscription Database]. The Gale Group, 2002. Agatucci, Cora (Professor of English, Humanities Dept., Central Oregon Community College). "Emergence of the Short Story: Literary Romanticism and Realism - Poe and Maupassant; Myth Lit. Theory." Week #4 Presentation/Handout Outline. Charters, Ann. "Appendix 2: A Brief History of the Short Story." The Story and Its Writer: An. Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford-St. Martin's, 2003. 995-1002. Charters, Ann. "Appendix 3: The Elements of Fiction." The Story and Its Writer: An. Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford-St. Martin's, 2003. 1003-1015. Charters, Ann. "Guy De Maupassant" [header note]. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to. Short Fiction. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford-St. Martin's, 2003. 523. Charters, Ann. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford-St. Martin's, 2003. Chopin, Kate. "How I stumbled upon Maupassant." [First published 1896] Rpt. The Story and Its. Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact Sixth ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2003. Maupassant, Guy De. "The Necklace." [First published 1884.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An. Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact Sixth ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2003. 524-530. Maupassant, Guy De. "The Writer's Goal." [First published 1888.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact Sixth ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2003. 896-898. Smith, Christopher. "The Necklace': Overview." Reference Guide to Short Fiction. Ed. Noelle. Watson, St. James Press, 1994. Rpt. Gale Literature Resource Center [Online Subscription Database.] The Gale Group, 2002. Ruzha Todorova ENG 104, Prof. C. Agatucci Literary Analysis Paper 4 November 2002. A Cure for Temporary Depression. The Yellow Wallpaperwritten by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, is a story of a young depressed woman, traveling to the country with her husband, so that she can be away from writing, which seems to have a bad impact on her psychological condition. Sandra Gilbert and Susan Gubar call it ”a striking story of female confinement and escape, a paradigmatic tale which (like Jane Eyre) seems to tell the story that all literary women would tell if they could speak their ‘speechless woe’” (874). In this story theme and point of view interlace and work together to create an intense description of an almost prison-like prescription for overcoming depression. She struggles with male oppression, because she is told by her husband and her brother many things about her own health that she disagrees with. She strives for independence, and she wants to break free from the bondages of that oppression. The story is written from the character’s point of view in a form resembling journal entries, which describe her stay in the house. The house itself is an old mansion, and the yellow wallpaper in the character’s bedroom seems to be really disturbing. She believes that there is a woman locked behind bars living in the pattern of that wallpaper. She spends a lot of time trying to figure it out, and in the end she completely breaks away even from her own mind. Ann Charters defines theme as the “generalization about the meaning of a story” (1013). The theme in The Yellow Wallpaper describes the struggle of women to live in a male-dominated society. Gilman portrays the man as insensitive and lacking in emotional support. From the beginning of the story forward the narrator speaks of how her husband and other men in her life direct her so that she will recover quickly. The narrator shows that even though she is convinced that she knows what to do about her depression, she is still influenced by her husband with the following passage: "I sometimes fancy that in my condition if I had less opposition and more society and stimulus – but John says the very worst thing I can do is to think about my condition, and I confess it always makes me feel bad" (306). Her husband seems to be the one who can change her thoughts because he is a man or because he is her husband. Nonetheless, she is still essay on Machine Heads Phil Demmel and Dave Mcclain Quit suppressed by a member of the opposite sex. Many times the narrator also speaks in a way that suggests that because a man speaks she has no means by which to disagree with him because she is a woman. A perfect example of this is presented in the beginning passages of the story, where the narrator states, "Personally, I disagree with their ideas. Personally, I believe that congenial work, with excitement and change, would do me good. But what is one to do?" (306). This last sentence "But what is one to do?" exemplifies wonderfully her oppressed female stature in the society of her life. She states right from the beginning that "John is a physician, and perhaps - (I would not say it to a living soul, of course, but this is dead paper and a great relief to my mind) - perhaps that is the one reason I do not get well faster" (306). She obviously loves her husband and trusts him but has some underlying feeling that maybe his prescription of total bed rest is not working for her. In the second passage the narrator becomes comfortable with the room, now she likes the room enough and is curious enough to open up to her husband and tell him what she thinks she has been seeing. John becomes terrified of these ideas she has in her head and what she might believe to be real and not real. He begins to plead with her and tries to convince her that she must control all of her ambitions and act sanely. Later John is trying to manipulate the narrator with guilt. He is implying that she must think of herself as getting better, mind and body, for the sake of other people, rather than herself. The narrator is, however, doubting that she will ever recover mentally. Although John says her appearance has improved, she believes that she is not physically better. The final passages of the story, at last, successfully manifest a display of power and possible regain of self-governance through the narrator's essay examples Elephant Tramples Tourist To Death standing up to her husband by locking him out of the room in which he has imprisoned her supposedly for her benefit. Whereupon, for the first time in the story, he must listen to her entreaties to discover where the key is hidden (317). According to Charters, point of view is “the author’s choice of a narrator for the story” (1009). In this story the narrator is a first person narrator. We can easily see what is going on the head of the main character. We can feel sorry for her because she is a victim of male oppression. However, we are presented with a biased story. We can only see the events that take place from her point of view, which turns out to be quite distorted. She stares at this wallpaper for hours on end and thinks she sees a woman behind the paper. "I didn't realize for a long time what the thing was that showed behind, that dim sub-pattern, but now I am quite sure it is a woman" (313). She becomes obsessed with discovering what is behind that pattern and what it is doing. "I don't want to leave now until I have found it out" (314). Once the narrator determines that the image is in fact a woman struggling to become free, she somehow aligns herself with the woman. We don’t see that until she mentions that she often sees the woman creeping outside: "I see her in that long shaded lane, creeping up and down. I see her in those dark grape arbors, creeping all around the garden. I don't blame her a bit. It must be very humiliating to be caught creeping by daylight! I always lock the door when I creep by daylight. I can't do it at night, for I know John would suspect something at once" (315). This shows the narrator seeing herself in the woman and when she sees the woman creeping outside, she sees herself. When she creeps outside she locks the door. She is afraid her husband will take away the only comfort she has. She continues to pursue this obsessive idea that she has to get the woman out. The narrator wants the woman to be free of the paper but does not want to let her go, because the woman is what keeps her focused and sane: "I don't want to go out, and I don't want to have anybody come in, till John comes. I want to astonish him. I've got a rope up here that even Jennie did not find. If that woman does get out, and tries to get away, I can tie her!" (317). She peels all the wallpaper that she can reach. She wants to help the woman get out, and she becomes quite extreme: "I am getting angry enough to do something desperate. To jump out of the window would be admirable exercise, but the bars are too strong even to try. Besides I wouldn't do it. Of course not. I know well enough that a step like that is improper and might be misconstrued" (317). She goes on to say, "I don't like to look out of the windows even--there are so many those creeping women, and they creep so fast. I wonder if they all come out of that wallpaper as I did?” (317). It seems she has released the woman and it is indeed herself. As if she enjoys being out and doing as she likes but at night her husband will be around and she mustn't creep around her husband. He might find her mad. But at last she finds the courage to confront her oppressor and stand up for herself. "'What is the matter?' he cried. 'For God's sake, what are you doing!' I kept on creeping just the same, but I looked at him over my shoulder. 'I've got out at last,' said I, 'in spite of you and Jane. And I've pulled off most of the paper, so you can't put me back!'” (318). Jane is undoubtedly the narrator herself. She is the result of a distorted mind trying to free herself from the male oppression. From the narrator’s point of view we had this fact hidden throughout the story. However, as soon as her mind has freed itself, she had freed herself both from her husband and from her own identity. In order to read and understand this story, we must consider many things. First the time frame in which the story was written, and that society's attitude of the story content at that time. Written in 1892, a woman suffering from depression was not clearly understood and was treated with isolation. This would clearly drive any person mad. The narrator made attempts to bring to her husband's attention what she felt was a better way of making her better but he refused to listen and ignored her wishes to involve herself in more activity. This was the experience of Gilman herself. She shares that she wrote The Yellow Wallpaper “to save people from being crazy” (879). Charters, Ann. “The Elements of Fiction”. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 1003 – 1015. Gilbert, Sandra m., and Gubar, Susan. “A Feminist Reading of Gilman’s ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’.” [First published 1979.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Essay examples Deadly flu: 80,000 killed last year 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 873 – 875. Gilman, Charlotte Perkins. “The Yellow Wallpaper.” [First published 1892.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 306 – 318. Gilman, Charlotte Perkins. “Why I Wrote ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’.” [First published 1913.] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 878 – 879. Sheena Van Landuyt ENG 104, Prof. C. Agatucci Literary Analysis Paper 27 November 2002. To complete a puzzle properly each and every piece must be accounted for; otherwise the final product is never comprehensive. A puzzle with missing pieces is very much like a story with missing elements. Every element plays an important role in the meaning and the integrity of the story. Clearly, with a puzzle there are pieces that are more consequential if missing than others. Just like a puzzle there are significant elements in a story that make a big difference. If such elements are removed some of the realistic aspects a story needs for readers to be able to relate are missing as well. Although there are many elements that go into a story there are two that are profoundly important to have in a story. These two elements are recognized as the plot and characters. A plot can be described as the “sequence of events in a story and there relation to one another as they develop and usually resolve a conflict” (Charters, “Elements” 1003). It is usually desirable for the author to present the plot in the beginning of the story, laid out so essay examples These 5 Moves Will Lift and Sculpt Your Butt - Using Only a Resistance Band can easily follow the events and their significance (Charters, “Elements” 1003). The conflict within the story is profoundly important to how the plot is going to be laid out since the plot itself is usually impacted by the conflict throughout the story. This point can be seen in Maupassant’s “The Necklace” extremely well. In the beginning of the story “The Necklace” Maupassant lays out the foundation of the conflict for his readers. Mme. Loisel is a pretty woman who longs for something more than she has and she pays for this throughout the story ( Maupassant 524). This internal conflict expands throughout the entire story. Mme. Loisel wants to be richer but she is married to a clerk and is far from rich (Maupassant 524). This first conflict illustrated by Maupassant drives the story very well. The second conflict presented in “The Necklace” was when the dinner invitation came. This conflict seems to be more external, because it is not a conflict Mme. Loisel has been struggling with internally for years. However, when the dinner invitation is presented another conflict is introduced. Mme. Loisel wants to attend this elaborate dinner, but not unless she can be in the most magnificent clothing and jewelry (Maupassant 525). This point is well illustrated when Mme. Loisel states, “there is nothing more humiliating than to look poor among other women who are rich” (Maupassant 526). Continuously after these two conflicts are introduced, she is introduced to more that get her into trouble. Thus the conflict within the story is driving the plot and consistently reappearing (Charters, “Elements” 1003). Within the plot there are components that are critically important when exploring a story. These components consist of exposition, rising action, climax, falling action and conclusion (Charters, “Elements” 1004-1005). Exposition includes the “introduction of characters, scene, time, and situation (Charters, “Elements” 1004). In “The Necklace” the exposition seemed to be in the beginning when the introduction of Mme. Loisel is taking place. At this point the author gives only a brief background of the past and present dimensions of her life (Maupassant 524). The rising action of a story is generally “the dramatization of events that complicate the situation and gradually intensify the conflict” (Charters, “Elements” 1005). In “The Necklace” this point would be when the couple is invited to the dinner party the reader can not tell at this point that the invitation is significant but it is (Maupassant 525). The climax can basically be described as the “turning point” in the story (Charters, “Elements” 1005). The climax is this particular story would surely be when Mme. Loisel discovers her necklace as missing (Maupassant 527). The falling action moves the conflict towards a solution (Charters, “Elements” 1005). In Mme. Loisel’s case this would be when she sees her friend Mme. Forestier on the street and confronts her. Once the conclusion sets in and ties together all the loose strings, the reader get the surprise that the necklace was fake the entire time (Maupassant 530). As one can see the plot plays a huge role in the development of a short story. Another important aspect of developing a short story is the character developed in the context of the story. It is important that characters be realistic in any story. Writers can accomplish the task of reality by making the characters either essay on Machine Heads Phil Demmel and Dave Mcclain Quit or static (Charters, “Elements” 1007). A static character is one that does not change throughout the story, while a dynamic character changes. Mme. Loisel is both a static and dynamic character. Mme. Loisel changes when the necklace disappears making her dynamic. This is true in the beginning she is from lower middle class where she has a comfortable home and servants (Maupassant 524). However, when the necklace disappears and must be replaced, she is forced to release her servants and change her lodging in order to pay off her debts. This change in Mme. Loisel is permanent thus making her a dynamic character (Maupassant 528). It is also easy for one to see Mme. Loisel as a static character also. This is due to the fact that Mme. Loisel never really changes in some aspects. Throughout the entire story she is envious of other people. One can see this at the beginning of the story with the introduction of the invitation. At this point Mme. Loisel insists on an expensive dress and necklace (Maupassant 525-526). It can also be seen at the end of the story when Mme. Loisel sees her friend Jeanne again for the first time in awhile and is still envious of her wealth and beauty. This aspect of Mme. Loisel’s character also makes her static (Maupassant 529-530). One can see how the plot and characters’ play an important role together in shaping the story and laying it out for the reader to understand. The plot helps to set the conflict, which in turn drives the plot as well as characters actions and motives. As an author, having the ability to integrate such important elements of a story successfully can be very difficult. Guy De Maupassant was not a naturally gifted writer, which makes the morals and outline of his stories even more believable (Charters, “Guy De” 523). Maupassant had difficulties in school while he was younger, which may explain why he joined the army during the 1870-71 Franco-Prussian War (Charters, “Guy De” 523). Maupassant was later taught how to write by a relative of the name Gustave Flaubert. Maupassant recalled writing, “verses, short stories, longer stories, even a wretched play. Nothing survived. The master read everything” (Charters, “Guy De” 523). It seemed that Maupassant was not a natural talent when it came to writing, which makes his writing meaningful because he must have struggled to write well and overcame the challenge. Flaubert instructed Maupassant that “talent is nothing other than a long patience. Work” (Charters, “Guy De” 523). This may be an important aspect of Maupassant’s life to examine. Maupassant writings seem to be packed with morals and hidden messages possibly due to lessons installed by Flaubert. Another important lesson Flaubert tried to install in his pupil was to look at everything within the context of any literary work and discover the one component that every other reader has missed. Flaubert explained the fact that every piece has some hidden labyrinth or message unexplored (Charters, “Guy De” 523). The lessons installed in Maupassant by Flaubert may be a large factor in the way he wrote. Since Flaubert focused so much on details and hidden unexplored messages, it is easy to see why there are so many subtle clues in “The Necklace” that readers can discover and interpret as they wish. Another important influence on Maupassant’s writing may simply be the era he was living in while he composed his stories. Ann Charters explains that “Maupassant’s plots are tightly organized and usually conclude with a decisive action” (Charters, “Brief History” 998). Maupassant plays close attention to physical and mental details. As a writer he favors a surprise ending, as one can tell by the ending of “The Necklace” (Charters, Brief History 998). Maupassant’s literary era could be classified primarily as 19 th Century Literary Realism (Agatucci 3). This period of literature involved real people with everyday events in which ordinary people could relate. Also this period places a large importance on classes and relationships between upper and lower classes, which is what Maupassant does extremely well (Agatucci 3). Maupassant is an exceptional writer and as explained in her essay “How I Stumbled upon Maupassant,” Kate Chopin explains how readers may not realize just how wonderful he is until they truly understand him. Kate Chopin explains her findings of Maupassant’s writing as somewhat of an inspiration. Chopin believes that his writings do not speak to everyone as a group but to each reader individually, by what the reader sees and hears within the pages (Chopin 861). Chopin describes Maupassant “as a man who escaped from tradition and authority, who had entered into himself and look out upon life through his own being” (Chopin 861). It is almost as if Chopin found herself as a writer when she began to study Maupassant’s work. Also she sees him as secretly telling hints of his stories within the pages. Maupassant does not just come out and explain the important hidden messages within his stories; he expresses them through the feelings each reader experiences while reading his literature (Chopin 861). It takes many special components to write a story. Maupassant had the opportunity to show his readers the elegance of his writing. Maupassant had a gift at combining elements of fiction like characters and plot. Through the combination of his history, era and hard work he developed stories literature readers could enjoy and relate to for generations. © 2002, Sheena Van Landuyt. Anonymous #1 ENG 104, Prof. C. Agatucci Literary Analysis Paper 27 November 2002. Anton Chekov is said to “ [to be] extremely modest about his extraordinary ability to empathize with the characters” that he wrote about in his stories (Charters, 134). He was careful not stereotype any of the characters he portrayed nor did he over dramatize the story’s plot. The characters emotions and reactions to those emotions were the vehicle for the stories plot. Chekov’s only desired to write about real people with real feelings which allowed his writings such as “The Lady with the Little Dog”, the seriousness and sympathy it deserves. Chekov emphasized on the man and the woman always being “ the two pole [of every story] (p. 949). Just as there are pulls toward poles of the earth so are the pulls on the characters in his stories; these pulls being forces of life and life circumstance. “The Lady with the Little Dog” demonstrates how reality forces undesired role play between a man and woman in love which is one of the definitive of literary realism established by Professor Agatucci; “[The Lady with the Little Dog] is an example of “A slice of life” such as ordinary people of contemporary times live in society caught up by social forces” (p. 3). The story’s main characters, Anna and Dimitri, their desire to be together are conflicted with the duties they have in common which are husband and wife to two different people. However, the love that Dimitri and Anna share represents the struggle of duties just as the desire for most people in society to want to break from reality. Dimitri, unlike Anna, was not upset or regretful of their love affair because “he had begun to be unfaithful to [his wife] long ago, was unfaithful often, and, probably for that reason, almost always spoke ill of women, and when they were discussed in his presence, he would say of them: ‘An inferior race!’”(p.144). Dimitri was introduced in the story as taking on an egotistical and selfish role knowing very well that not only was he beyond so many years to Anna but also, “in his tone and caresses, there has been a slight shade John C. Reilly Chairshots Braun Strowman In вЂњHolmes & WatsonвЂќ Trailer essay mockery, the somewhat coarse arrogance of a happy man” (p. 149). He seemed to have had his way with Anna and did not want to fall short of this good thing. In contrast, Anna responded in way that she was new to being unfaithful to her husband and maybe even realized that she was not Dimitri’s first mistress. She admits, “ I love an honest man, pure life, sin is vile to me, I myself don’t know what I’m doing”(p. 147). Anna knew right from the first day she met Dimitri that she loved him but those feelings over powered her judgment and duty to her husband. She could only try to justify that this was not real love that they shared but a scandalous and un-righteous thing to be apart of. Anna and Dimitri are considered to be dynamic characters because not only to do they change the way they feel about each other but they also change the way they essay examples Italy charts a course for financial suicide about their life circumstances. Moreover, are also considered to be well-rounded characters encompassing the substance of the story Chekov intended. Dimitir’s wife is only mentioned a few times and is considered to be a flat character because we do not get a sense for how she reacts to Dimitri’s scandalous love affairs. However, we do have Dimitri’s point of view of her to be a woman “who loved without sincerity, with superfluous talk, affectedly, with hysteria, with an expression as if it were not passion” (p. 146). He obviously had a very superficial relationship with his wife that only made him compare his happiness and love with Anna. Anna followed Dimitri everywhere, he could hear her breathing and saw resemblances of her in the oddest of places (p.150). His life back home was boring and uninteresting to him. He only became so appreciative by Anna’s beauty and the excitement that he gave him when she was away. Meanwhile, Chekov did not explain to us the process by which she changed in her character however, Anna admitted that she adored him and he was all that she could think about. She realized her triteness before when she tried thought that she was just a “trashy woman”(p.147). Dimitri’s desire to find Anna after many years of being in Moscow is considered to be an important turning point in the story. Dimitri forfeits his strength that he could live without her because his emotions were too high strung and he valued being with her too intensely. After meeting up with Anna at the Geishahe was able to test Anna and wait for her to reveal her true feeling so that he was not just imaging she was in love with him. And so the climax begins, Anna reveals, “ I think only of you all the time, I’ve lived with only thoughts of you.” Furthermore, the falling action of the story is the plan of continued rendezvous’ in Moscow secretly. He and Anna “loved each other like very close dear people, like husband and wife, like tender friends; it seemed to them that fate itself had destined them for each other, and they could not understand why he had a wife and she a husband” (p. 155). They were bound like soul mates and did want to live the false lives they had with people they were not in love with. So they knew that their problems were far from few and “ the most complicated and difficult part was just beginning” (p. 155). The conclusion of a “happy ending” is left by the reader to implore because Chekov left it open with a purpose. The purpose was to leave it less dramatic and predictable. The love that these two people shared simplified the term “ love is pain” but more importantly they finally found each other and they did not have to live in falsity. This true love was a new and treacherous territory that they did not want to avoid. The willingness they had caused them to want to break away from the roles that bound them for such a long time. Chekov showed transformation and humbleness of the characters in “The Lady with the Little Dog” and is a story that many could appeal to because of its deepest emotional level between the characters of Anna and Dimitri. Agatucci, Cora (Professor of English, Humanities Dept., Central Oregon Community College). “Emergence of the Short Story: Literary Romanticism and Realism. Poe and Maupassant; Myth Lit. Theory.” In-class Presentation, English 104: Introduction to Literature: Fiction, Central Oregon Community College [Bend, OR.], Fall 2002. Online Handout –Outline [accessed] 21Oct. 2002: http://www.cocc.edu /cagatucci/classes/eng104coursepack/shortstory.htm. Carver, Raymond. “The Ashtray.”[First published 1984] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/ St. Martins, 2003. 949. Chekov, Anton. “ The Lady with the Little Dog.” [First published 1899]. Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ed. Ann Charter. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/ St. Martin’s 2003. 143-155. Ford, Richard. “ Why We Like Chekov”. [First published 1998] Rpt. The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Story Fiction. Ed. Ann Charters. Compact 6 th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2003. 869-873.