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What hidden function does Madame Defarge's constant knitting serve and how does it...

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bonita1994 | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted August 14, 2009 at 3:51 AM via web

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What hidden function does Madame Defarge's constant knitting serve and how does it affect Charles Darnay's lfe?

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted August 14, 2009 at 11:04 PM (Answer #1)

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When we are first presented with Madame Defarge, she is knitting quietly in the wine shop. However, this knitting hides the bloodthirst that we see later on in the novel as we discover that behind this mask of passivity lies a real desire for vengeance, for she is secretly knitting with her stitches a register of the names intended for slaughter as part of the revolution. In particular, Darnay's association with the Evremonde family and Mdame Defarge's special link with this family means that she takes a particular relish in condemning both Charles Darnay and his wife to death. We see her committing the faces of Lucie and her family to memory, and then invades the house of the Darnay's to try and catch Lucie before she leaves.

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