The tragedy of flaws Two tragedies, two stories of women who were in otherwise normal marriages. The Birthmark by Nathaniel Hawthorne is a short story about scientist named Aylmer who becomes obsessed with perfecting the beauty of his wife Georgiana (Nathaniel Hawthorne 113). Georgiana has a small birthmark on her cheek that resembles a small hand. Over time Aylmer’s negative reactions to the sight of the birthmark pushes Georgiana emotionally to give in and go through the dangerous process of it’s removal, which ultimately cost Georgiana her life. The story of an Hour by Kate Chopin is about a woman Louise who has a heart condition and is married to a man named Brently Mallard. She learns of her husband’s death in an accident and falsely finds a renewed joy for life as she is free from the burden of marriage. Tragically she goes to the front door as it is being opened with a key, to find Mr. Mallard still alive, causing her to die of heart …show more content…
Georgiana took note of Aylmer’s displeasure of the birthmark from the dream and through his stealthy stare, causing Georgina displeasure (Nathaniel Hawthorne 114). Aylmer’s further loathing of the birthmark, causes Georgiana to give up for the sake of his happiness. She tells, Aylmer after bringing up the conversation of the birthmark, “Either remove this dreadful hand, or take my wretched life!” (Nathaniel Hawthorne 114). Aylmer could have avoided tragedy, however he failed to listen to his assistant Aminadab, who stated he would “never part with that birthmark” (Nathaniel Hawthorne 114). Later on Aylmer would come to understand how connected the birthmark was to Georgiana, just as Aminadab had understood earlier. Selfish and blinded by his obsession he continues the course of removing the birthmark costing Georgiana her
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
His obsession over the birthmark became overwhelming for his loving wife, to the point where she feels as if “a red-hot iron had touched her cheek” whenever the birthmark is mentioned. While she once referred to her mark as a “charm” she changes her tone to describe it negatively after she now associates it as the object of Aylmer’s “horror and disgust.” To intensify Aylmer’s obsession leading to Georgiana’s insecurity, it is mentioned that he did not think about the birthmark until after they had married, after Georgiana had grown to love Aylmer and his view of her
This technique was selected as Georgiana’s responsibility to darkness and sin. Georgiana’s birthmark represents her humanity.
It shows that our flaws make up a large part of who we are which make it very difficult to separate the two. To remove it would only result in failure. Aylmer finally is able to remove “the last crimson tint of the birthmark -- that sole token of human imperfection” (13). The mark shows that people are inherently imperfect and it’s what makes us human. Once Aylmer removes that imperfection, Georgiana dies because it is impossible to obtain perfection as a person.
The author does this to give us the impression that the birthmark is no ordinary birthmark, but that it has some sort of mystical tie to Georgiana. Another example is how the story talks of how Georgiana was like a celestial being after Aylmer had relieved her of her only flaw but he regretted removing it for it also ridded
In “The Birthmark”, Aylmer is bothered in seeing a birthmark on his wife Georgiana’s cheek. I believe that Aylmer was truly evil in the way he manipulated Georgiana in thinking he truly cared about her. Aylmer’s ideas of perfection were the most dangerous thing about him and even led him to kill. When Georgiana learned of her husband’s disdain towards her birthmark she was devastated. Slowly, Aylmer manipulated Georgiana into believing that this mark would need to be removed.
A character having an ability to be an influence of fatality is a dangerously powerful trait to have. The victim’s life is placed into the hands of the influencer. This power of fatality can be seen within Robert Frost’s poem, “Out, Out,” when a personified buzz saw cuts the hand off the boy using it. This injury causes him to die. This power of fatality can also be seen in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s short story, “The Birthmark,” a scientist, named Aylmer creates a risky and unreliable potion that was expected to remove his wife’s birthmark but, it ultimately kills her.
The birthmark itself symbolizes morality. Aylmer, this brilliant scientist and husband to Georgiana, sees it has as fatal flaw. It also represents this imperfection of human nature. Nothing is perfect in nature, but science can help improve to make it seem flawless.
In The Birthmark, Hawthorne depicts the obsession for perfection, the tole it takes on one and the consequences it has. The quest for perfection is unrealistic and unobtainable as we are only mere humans incapable of reconstructing our DNA. In The Birthmark, Hawthorne tells the story of a woman named Georgiana and her scientist husband Aylmer, who are both fixated on a birthmark similar to the look of a tiny human hand. Aylmer is disgusted by Georgiana’s birthmark, wanting to please her husband Georgiana is willing to do anything for him to look at her in a normal manner “Danger is nothing to me;for life which this hateful mark
When Aylmer and Georgiana got married, Georgiana was taken from her mothers home, making her complete dependent on Aylmer and his opinions. In addition to this, Aylmer’s belief hat he is better than God, and has the ability to remove Georgiana’s birthmark, creates inequality in their relationship. Finally, due to Georgiana’s obsession with what Aylmer thinks of her, paired with Aylmer's rude looks and comments, leads her to do something
These scholars’ arguments contribute to the story, “The Birth-Mark”, Nathanial Hawthorne expresses the common personal issue that individuals possess. The Birth-Mark was about a man named Aylmer and his obsession of science and the birth mark on his wife’s face. The birth
In “ Desiree’s Baby” and “ The Story of An Hour” written by Kate Chopin the audience analyzes the themes of love and marriage presented by the author in a unique style that is different from other authors during this time period. The similarities that the two short stories address include both of the women who happen to be young wives living under a male dominated culture as well as being under the control of their husbands whom they loved. However, the themes of the two stories are different. In “Desiree’s Baby” the theme portrays cruelty that is expressed through racial prejudice as well as being “blinded” by the ones you love, as compared to “ The Story of An Hour” which gives the reader a chance to explore the issue of forbidden joy in independence, and oppressiveness in marriage.
Equally Aylmer and Dr. Rappiccini, both characters in Hawthorne’s works causes destruction of human life with selfish aims to perfect the woman of their choice. In the case of Aylmer’s love interest in science, just as with the case of Beatrice’s father, blinds him to the true beauty and humanity of the woman before him. Aylmer views Georgiana’s birthmark as a symbol of imperfection and tries to remove it. At the end of the story, Georgiana say, "My poor Aylmer," she repeated, with a more than human tenderness, "you have aimed loftily; you have done nobly. Do not repent that with so high and pure a feeling, you have rejected the best the earth could offer.
Georgiana “could not but observe that his most splendid successes were almost invariably failures, if compared with the ideal which he aimed” (222). Even Aylmer’s most successful experiments were considered failures because of his desire for perfection. Aylmer is so consumed by perfection, he does not see the accomplishments he has made. Aylmer posses a potion that he deems “the Elixir of Immortality” (221) which he describes as being able to remove freckles but is not strong enough to remove the mark from Georgiana. Aylmer remarks “this is merely superficial.
“Good fiction creates empathy. A novel takes you somewhere and asks you to look through the eyes of another person, to live another life”. (Barbara Kingsolver) Fiction is an imaginary thing or event, postulated for the purposes of argument or explanation as defined by Dictionary.com. There are many literary devices that writers incorporate into their works. The main reason literary devices are used is to connect with the reader.
Hawthorne was a master at creating abstract comparisons between the physical and psychological aspects contained in his stories, and his use of symbolism helps to frame the characters themselves, as well as contribute to the overall theme of the story. In the story, Aylmer was a very self-centered and egotistical doctor concerned with his own studies and scientific endeavors for much of his life. He only pursued the human connection after a myriad of failed attempts in scientific experiments. According to the suppositions of Jeffrey Howard in his analytical summary of “The Birthmark”, the positioning of Georgina’s birthmark on the left side of her face was symbolic of inferiority. The placement of the birthmark on the left, at the time, was considered substandard to anything on the right, thus symbolically lessening Georgina’s appeal.