How is the setting of The Necklace manipulated by the writer to emphasize the main theme of the story?

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ask996 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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There is no doubt that Guy de Maupassant has manipulated the setting of “The Necklace.” He has created two settings for one type of character. Mathilde and her husband live in a small, middle class residence. This must be the setting because it gives reason for Mathilde to envy wealth and its privileges. It also has a more sophisticated setting in which Mathilde desires to shine. The settings, individually, are believable, so in that sense the manipulation works. Realistically, however, this entire scenario would not occur in real life. Mathilde and her husband were very middle class. More than likely they would never be included in the wealthy setting or activities. Mathilde’s friend was wealthy (At least she presented herself in that way.) It is not likely that she would still socialize with her poorer friend, let alone share jewelry with her.

Enotes has some great links.

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