• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explore the ways in which de Maupassant presents Mathilde Loisel as a character who develops and matures during the course of The Necklace..

Extracts from this document...


IGCSE English Language Section B Assignment. 'The Necklace.' By Guy de Maupassant Explore the ways in which de Maupassant presents Mathilde Loisel as a character who develops and matures during the course of the narrative. The writer has presented the development and maturity of Mathilde, the protagonist of the story throughout the course of the narrative effectively. De Maupassant has done so by firstly providing detailed information illustrating the fussiness of the extremely delicate Mathilde, then contrasting her situation with a series of events later to emphasize the change she undergoes later in the story and the extent to which she matures and 'grown up' from a 'child.' In the beginning, Mathilde is described as a 'charming young creature' who is married to a 'little' clerk, suggesting at the time beauty is the most important value of women and the value of a clerk is just too 'small' in comparison. As foreshadowed by the difference in status, in the second paragraph Mathilde is described to dress 'plainly' and 'was unhappy' due to the clerk she has married, 'as if she had really fallen from a higher station.' The introduction of Mathilde as a self-obsessed woman who sees herself as a high ranked aristocrat gives us the impression of a spoilt girl who demands everything to be perfect whereas everything is limited by her low status husband, foretelling the events that happen later. ...read more.


Hearing a seemingly wonderful suggestion from her husband, Mathilde 'uttered a cry of joy' when she realizes that she can borrow expensive jewelries for free from her friend Madame Forestier. Again, this highlights her greed as she desires things for free. In addition, even when she is shown a large box of jewelries, she keeps asking for more until she finds a superb diamond necklace. Her 'hands trembled' and is 'lost in ecstasy', as if in love herself with the necklace. This goes to show Mathilde's greed for the physical luxuries and her obsession with really the necklace but not her own beauty without the diamond necklace. In fact, the 'black satin box' that contains the necklace can be said to have associations with the Pandora's Box which is said to bring bad luck, foreshadowing the later events. Indeed, Mathilde is cursed with all the bad luck like, though not yet displayed at the ball coming after, as she 'was a great success'. She 'was prettier than any other woman present, elegant, graceful, smiling and wild with joy.' There is an irony though, the diamond necklace itself was never mentioned, an indication of its insignificance. Once again, de Maupassant describes Mathilde to be intoxicated by pleasure, 'in a sort of cloud of happiness', as if she feels drugged, although in reality everything is just an fantasy image only. ...read more.


Nonetheless, Mathilde has changed as she no longer envies her friend Madame Forestier who is 'still young, still beautiful, still charming' (the use of triplet here) when she bumps into her 'after the labors of the week'. She was reluctant to see Madame Forestier ten years ago but now she is no longer afraid to. Clearly, Mathilde develops and matures over the ten year span. De Maupassant does not emphasize the details of labour during the ten years but focuses on the outcomes, and changes of Mathilde. She matured and 'looked old', becoming 'the woman of impoverished households with frowsy hair, skirts askew and red hands.' The use of dialog between Madame Forestier and Mathilde, 'Oh, my poor Mathilde! How you are changed!' and the contrast with her charming appearance furthermore highlight the unpleasant punishments Mathilde have undergone. In conclusion, the author constructs the narrative with good organization. De Maupassant lists series of events to contrast the differences between Mathilde before the 'punishment' and after. In the beginning he builds up and emphasizes the extremely flawed character of Mathilde, then following up with a turning point where it separates the whole story into two with Mathilde being at two extremes. Thus it is clearly shown that Mathilde develops much in maturity, not a spoilt child anymore as there is a strong contrast between her at the beginning and at the end. It can be considered the main idea de Maupassant conveys throughout the narrative. ?? ?? ?? ?? Jason Lin 11T Jason Lin 11T ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate World Literature section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate World Literature essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    Comparison of emma and charls in madame bovary

    4 star(s)

    Apart from this, she is competent woman which is able top do many different things and she is much more active than Charles. Whereas Charles is very similar to his father in some things such as being a boring person and unable to do anything, which is proved all though

  2. Joe-Clarissa-Jed-ENDURING LOVE. Background information about the character details about family, career

    her husband was a hero". Why would Joe have to go? This situation had traumatized him enough, the fact that he is willing to go and see the wife of the victim proves that he is caring towards others. Jed Parry Joe is scared of Jed: Throughout the novel, Joe

  1. Money and Happiness:Neither in de Maupassants The Necklace, nor in Ibsens A Dolls House, ...

    Struggling to appear more than she really was, Mathilde had tried to gain recognition she felt she deserved, but did not have. Yet the illusion of wealth is not the wealth itself, and hardly worth sacrifices.

  2. Hamlet Journal - rewriting key passages from the play

    He knows he didn't kill Polonius. It is a false promise because he knows his innocence. Gertrude told him that Hamlet killed him and so in promising Laertes that he would be able to either have his kingdom or his patience to find the person responsible so he can exact his revenge, he cam get rid of hamlet without getting his hands dirty.

  1. Las obras Romeo y Julieta de William Shakespeare y Una Casa de Muecas de ...

    mismo autor, bastar� poner el apellido y los a�os de los diferentes trabajos separados por comas, distinguiendo por letras (a, b, etc.) aquellos trabajos que haya publicado en el mismo a�o (Casas, 1985, 1986, 1987 a, 1987b, 1995). � Si el nombre del autor forma parte del texto, entre par�ntesis s�lo ir� el a�o: Holmber (1985)

  2. To what extent does Guy de Maupassant show sympathy for Madame Loisel in 'The ...

    These next two lines explain how she is poor in the sense of how she is a victim of Fate despite not living a life of poverty. The author continues to inform of her poor station by saying that ?She dressed simply, being unable to afford anything better?? Guy de

  1. In what ways and to what effect have physical and/or spiritual journeys been presented ...

    Likewise, in No Great Mischief Macleod uses Alexander?s journey?s to Toronto to delve into his novels thematic concerns. As Alexander passes through the countryside on ?the 401? highway he passes ?family groups? of migrant fruit pickers. In the very opening passage of the novel, they are ?stooping and straightening or

  2. A Biography of Guy de Maupassant.

    During the 1800?s he wrote 300 short stories, six novels, an anthology, and poems. He is renown for stories such as ?Boule de Suife? ( Ball of Fat, 1800), La Maison Tellier (1881), Une Vie ( A Woman?s Life, 1883), Bel-Ami (1885), Pierre Et Jean (1888)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work