An Education in Escape: Madame Bovary and Reading

759 WordsOct 8, 19994 Pages
An Education in Escape: Madame Bovary and Reading A theme throughout Flaubert's Madame Bovary is escape versus confinement. In the novel Emma Bovary attempts again and again to escape the ordinariness of her life by reading novels, having affairs, day dreaming, moving from town to town, and buying luxuries items. It is Emma's early education described for an entire chapter by Flaubert that awakens in Emma a struggle against what she perceives as confinement. Emma's education at the convent is perhaps the most significant development of the dichotomy in the novel between confinement and escape. The convent is Emma's earliest confinement, and it is the few solicitations from the outside world that intrigue Emma, the books smuggled…show more content…
Emma Bovary found interest in the things around her which prevent her boredom in her early education it was the novels she read, "They were filled with love affairs, lovers, mistresses, persecuted ladies fainting in lonely country houses." She also found interest in the sea but only because it was stormy. But all the things that Emma found interest in she soon became board of from Charles to Leon. This cycle of boredom and the progression of images of confinement, escape, and chaos, parallel both in the Chapter on Emma's education and the novel as a whole the entire mural of the novel as Emma's journey from boredom in reality to self-destruction in fantasy. Footnote1 Flaubert, Gustave. MADAME BOVARY. trans. Lowell Bair. New York: Bantam Books,

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