Eugenics In Rappaccini's Daughter

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The Eugenics of Rappaccini's Daughter and Desiree’s Baby Eugenics is about controlling breeding to have certain qualities in the human condition. Within the two stories of Rappaccini’s Daughter and Desiree’s Baby, they share the common ground of controlled breeding. In the story, Rappaccini focuses on the scientific aspects of mixing science into his daughter to make her become super natural, while Desiree’s Baby brings into the story the category of mixing with other races to be something unnatural. Both stories share the idea that eugenics could corrupt their reproductive and sexual behavior, which is seen as impure. In Rappaccini’s Daughter, Giovanni asked, “Was this garden, then, the Eden of the present world” when he first saw Beatrice in her garden (Hawthorne 9). Beatrice never leaves her home, and only stays in the garden like a caged bird with no freedom. The flowers in the garden represent women and also adds the element of controlling her sexuality. The garden is seen as Beatrice’s natural state, which is the idea that she is still a pure woman seen by Giovanni. There isn’t any science involved in the scene yet, which implies that Beatrice is still God’s creation of a pure human.
As the story progresses, Giovanni becomes more suspicious and starts to analyze the garden and see it as fierce and unnatural (Hawthorne
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This is evident in the story as Desiree is a privileged white woman in Louisiana who lives with her husband Armand who loves her. She had what “average” women in that era should have in that state: a home, a family, and slaves since that’s how average white people lived back then. Notably, when her child began to develop a little more is when her mother noticed the changes of the baby and exclaimed, “This is not the baby (Chopin 2)!” Desiree didn’t notice the changes in her baby that other people around her estate had
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