M. Butterfly Act I, Scenes 7-13: Questions and Answers

David Henry Hwang

Act I, Scenes 7-13: Questions and Answers

Questions
1. Does Song believe that the “White man” can fairly judge his own values?

2. Who does Gallimard fall in love with?

3. What are the circumstances in which Gallimard lost his virginity?

4. Why does Toulon promote Gallimard?

5. What does Song admit in order to get Gallimard to confess his love?

Answers
1. Song believes that Gallimard, the White man, can only see things subjectively. He is incapable of truly understanding his own values.

2. Gallimard actually falls for his image of the ideal woman. Song realizes what Gallimard wants and plays the role of the submissive Chinese woman with whom Gallimard desperately wants to fall in love.

3. Gallimard’s friend, Marc, arranged for a woman to seduce Gallimard. The woman was very aggressive and assumed a superior position, at least from Gallimard’s viewpoint. The implication is that the experience was less than satisfactory for Gallimard.

4. Toulon notices Gallimard is more aggressive and confident. His relationship with Song empowers and endows confidence upon him. Toulon is impressed by rumors that Gallimard gets along well with the natives.

5. Song admits that she is Gallimard’s “Butterfly.” In other words, she confirms Gallimard’s idealization of the meek, dedicated Oriental woman. He falls in love with this stereotype.