Bases on the character of Desiree, what conclusions can be made about a woman's place in society?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Kate Chopin's short story "Desiree's Baby" makes a very poignant statement on a woman's place in society. This story tells of the relationship between Desiree and Armand Aubigny. Desiree, an orphan, marries Armand after he falls in love with her. His immediate love for her is described as him being "struck by a pistol shot." Given that Desiree was an orphan, her adoptive mother worried about the impact her "obscure origin" would have on her marriage. Armand did not care; he could give her "one of the oldest and proudest [names] in Louisiana."

After the birth of their child, things begin to change. Although he is at first happy, Armand then questions the race of their child. The baby looks like the "quadroon" servant boy who fans Desiree in the Louisiana heat. Believing to know his own race, Armand accuses Desiree of being black. This newly discovered information could tarnish his proud name. He banishes Desiree and their child. In the end, Armand comes to...

(The entire section contains 524 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team