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Loisel is a calm and complacent sort. He is satisfied with simple pleasures and is out of his depth at a formal social occasion. He is a hard, sincere worker, however, and he sacrifices tirelessly for the sake of his integrity and honor. He contributes to the financial disaster by not insisting that Mathilde tell Jeanne about the loss of the necklace. The conversations of Mathilde and Loisel in paragraphs 8–38 indicate that Mathilde pressures and manipulates Loisel. She seems to be less interested in him and in his needs than in her own. Loisel wants to please Mathilde, but is unable to deal with her on a personal level. More to attain his own composure than to give her pleasure, he buys her the dress and suggests that she borrow the jewels. There is no evidence in the story that the two have anything more than a perfunctory marital relationship.
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