Kate Chopin is the author of a very popular short story called “Desiree’s Baby”. This story takes place in the 1890s, during the time of slavery and has to do with a white woman named Desiree Valmonde, who was abandoned by her parents and adopted by a married couple. It also has to do with a white man named Armand, who is Desiree’s significant other. Being the happily, healthy couple that they are, they decide to have a baby together, and when the baby is born Armand and Desiree were both delighted and seemed as if life couldn’t get better. As soon as the baby gets older, Armand started to notice that his baby’s skin was giving off the complexion of either a “quadroon” or “octoroon”- ⅛ or ⅛ African.
However society thinks Armand is white,because of his appearance,therefore he is able to inherit his father’s property. Another Irony that this story has is when, Desiree is being discriminated for her skin color. Desiree is facing racial discrimination.
The first being the dissolution of his marriage, and later the knowledge that he was in fact at fault for the change. At the end of the story as he is divesting himself of Desiree’s belongings, he comes across a letter from his own deceased mother which reads,” night and day, I than good God for having arranged our lives that our dear Armand will never know that his mother, who adores him, belongs to the race that is cursed with the brand of slavery” (Chopin), which brings him to his epiphany. The fact that he did not know could be because of his parents’ choice to raise him abroad where the stigma of slavery did not exist. Maybe she was light skinned enough that she could pass for a white woman. We may never know how this accomplishment was carried out, but it is evident that Armand now knew, that although his son was bi-racial, it was his lineage, not Desiree’s, at fault.
Desiree has grown up with the pain of knowing she was abandoned by her birth parents. With the brokenness of an orphan inside of her, she grows up "little more than a baby herself" (1) craving attention because her basic need for love and belonging is never truly satisfied. Due to her childhood, Desiree's motivation in life is her desire to find a pure love that will not abandon her in times of struggle and accepting her for who she is.
Also, when he states “Ah, upon another face perhaps it might, but never yours,” he is telling her that he thought her face was perfect without it, and that an unperfect face would look good with it. By telling his wife that she is not beautiful because of a birthmark, he is showing that he has authority over his wife’s life because her life affects him, depicting that he has complete control in their relationship. Armand also has a negative reaction towards Désirée. Désirée had just given birth to their son, and when both Armand and Désirée realize one of them is not fully white, because their son is not white, Armand explains, ““It means,” he answered lightly, “that the child is not white; it means that you are not white”” (Chopin, 3, Introduction). There could have been multiple possibilities of why the baby was not “White,” but due to Armand’s first intuition that Désirée was not white, he is showing that he has authority of the situation and that what he says goes.
The short story, “Desiree’s Baby”, by Kate Chopin addresses several issues that played a major role in the Antebellum South. Desiree, abandoned as a child, receives new hope when she is found and raised by Madame Valmonde. At a young age, Desiree quickly falls in love with Armand, who would later cause destruction and misery in their marriage. With the birth of their child, Armand and Desiree face racial tensions and conflicts within themselves. Throughout the story, Chopin shows the prominent role reputation plays in shaping the characters, setting, and conflicts.
She looks at Zandrine, the black maid, for conformation, and when she finds it asks about Armand’s thoughts of the baby. This shows that she is afraid of what Armand thinks about the baby, because she knows how he treats his slaves. She sees that being on the plantation would be a death sentence, and is worried about her daughter and grandson. The trees on the plantation are also evidence of foreshadowing. The trees are described as being dark and solemn, saying that they are suffering.
For the girl grew to be beautiful and gentle, affectionate and sincere, - the idol of Valmonde” (Chopin 1). Desiree not only had a new life, but she had someone who loved and cared for her no matter what. She was thrown out by her family and left to die but when Valmonde saw her and took her in she gave her a chance at life she gave her a chance to become something and somebody. Because Desiree comes from an unknown past her ancestry is unknown causing many people to be very cautious around her. Even though Desiree would’ve been expected to never amount to anything she
“Desiree’s Baby” is a short story written by Kate Chopin. Désirée is the adopted daughter of Monsieur and Madame Valmondé. Abandoned as a baby, she was found by Monsieur Valmondé lying in the shadow of a stone pillar near the Valmondé gateway. She is courted by the son of another wealthy, well known and respected family, Armand. They marry and have a child.
Desiree’s baby is a short story that opens with Madame Valmonde visiting Desiree and her baby.Desiree is married to a man named Armand Aubigny who had fallen in love with Desiree when he sees her standing against the stone pillar, even though they knew each other since they were small children, ever since Armand and his father came from Paris, after his mother died. Having had been told Desiree’s origin should be examined flew by him as Armand was so in love that he does not care about Desiree’s ancestors and decides it does not matter that she does not have a family name of her own in the end the two married and then bore the baby.Madame Valmonde has a surprise awaiting her. She has not seen the baby for a month and when she arrives to L’Abri