Désirée's Baby Literary Analysis

811 Words4 Pages
One of the most prevalent themes in literature and today’s society is the role that gender plays in the American family, in this case, most predominantly in the South. Most traditionalist thinkers, even today, believe that women have limited options in what they can and cannot do; to some, it is truly a “man’s world.” While written in the late 1800’s, Kate Chopin’s short story “Désirée’s Baby” contains topics of gender roles in the Southern Antebellum period that have remained relevant worldwide throughout the years. Chopin uses foreshadowing, irony, the element of surprise, and figurative language to portray the traditional gender roles for women in the seventeenth century; she also uses characterization to show the pride Armand had in himself, such as his white, male stature, which caused him to believe that he was never at fault. The novella portrays Désirée as almost hidden in her husband’s shadow with the usage of figurative language and characterization. Chopin wrote,“When he frowned she trembled, but loved him. When he smiled, she asked no greater blessing of God” (2). Armand’s every move determined how Désirée acted; if Armand was upset, Désirée could not bring herself to feel happiness. As the storyline develops, the family comes to realize…show more content…
Women conformed to traditional practices even if they did not necessarily agree with them. Chopin’s usage of figurative writing techniques reveal the position that women held in the seventeenth century, along with the development of Armand’s prideful manner. Men felt an entitlement to be seen as the leader of their homes, which would lead to harsh treatment to all who inhabited it, including his wife and children. She used this story as a way to show others how women were seen and treated during her life. Due to how truly far ahead Chopin was in her time, this story’s themes still remain relevant
Open Document