Anaylsis of "Desiree's Baby" by Kate Chopin Essay

881 Words Sep 20th, 2012 4 Pages
Robin Faulkner
ENG 201-715
March 29, 2012
Prof. J. Wynter
“Desiree’s Baby”

In Desiree’s Baby, Kate Chopin shows how over valuing of white race and status can destroy a relationship and a family. Race and status are intangible ideas humans make up to segregate one another and should not be valued higher than a human life, but this is not the case in "Desiree’s Baby.”
Destructive behavior begins when the child is three months old; rumors of the baby’s race spark Armand’s imperious exacting nature. He notices the baby appears to be of mixed race. At first he deals with the issue by avoiding the baby and Desiree. Then one day as Desiree was watching over her child, she looked at the child, comparing his skin color to that of the
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Unfortunately, Armand’s over value of race rubs off onto Desiree. Not knowing her true race, Desiree cannot live with the dissatisfaction of herself, her husband’s disgrace, nor that fact that he does not love her or the baby anymore. She cannot awake from the nightmare that her life has turned into. She takes the baby and wanders out into a deserted field where she and the baby perish. Thus Armand is to blame for destroying his family because of his obsession with status and the white race.
With Desiree and the baby gone, Armand decides he must destroy the rest of their belongings. He tells the slaves to burn anything that belonged to Desiree and the baby. The last thing to go was letters that Desiree had written to Armand before their marriage. While gathering those letters, Armand discovers a letter his mother wrote to his father. It read, “I thank god for having so arranged our lives that our dear Armand will never know that his mother, who adores him, belongs to the race this is cursed with the brand of slavery” (244). Armand’s parents knew what they were doing to the family name, but they did not care because they truly loved one another, so much so that they kept Armand’s race a secret as to keep up the family’s reputation. But Armand could not do the same for his own family because he valued his status and white race so highly. After
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