Emma Bovary as a Victim in "Madame Bovary" Analytical Essay by icfirat

Emma Bovary as a Victim in "Madame Bovary"
A discussion of whether Emma Bovary can be considered a victim in Flaubert's "Madame Bovary".
# 55046 | 1,873 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2004 | US
Published on Jan 17, 2005 in Literature (French) , English (Analysis)

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This paper examines how Gustave Flaubert's "Madame Bovary" is the portrait of a woman trapped in an unsatisfactory marriage in an ordinary bourgeois town. Her attempts to escape the monotony of her life through adulterous relationships with other men are ultimately disillusioned by the reality that the men she has chosen are shallow and self-centered and that she has overstretched herself financially. In despair, Emma resolves her dilemma by taking her own life. It discusses how, following the end of the novel, "Madame Bovary" can be considered a story of one woman's faulty perception of reality; namely, Emma is a victim of her own romanticism. It also discusses whether it is possible to consider Emma as a woman crushed by a materialist and complacent century; that is, she is a victim of the "bourgeois century."

From the Paper:

"It seems that the mistake in involving too deeply in romanticism is the fact that it fosters a fundamentally false understanding of the world. As Emma says, "what I love now is the kind of story which one can read at a single sitting, which one can give one a thrill of terror. I hate low heroes and lukewarm sentiments of the sort one finds in real life" (Flaubert, 73). It encourages expectations that have no reasonable hope of ever being realized. This sets up a pattern which recurs throughout the novel: Emma dreams of one thing but gets something else. Marriage, motherhood, and adultery all fall short of Emma's expectations, and she seems constantly destined to disillusionment. For instance, the flat Norman landscape that surrounds her is in conflict with the exotic lands of romantic fiction; on the other hand, Tostes, Yonville and even Rouen are no match for the erotic and artistic promise of Paris; and finally, Emma's men fail to correspond to her fantasies of the perfect lover despite their initial promise."

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APA Format

Emma Bovary as a Victim in "Madame Bovary" (2005, January 17) Retrieved December 08, 2022, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/emma-bovary-as-a-victim-in-madame-bovary-55046/

MLA Format

"Emma Bovary as a Victim in "Madame Bovary"" 17 January 2005. Web. 08 December. 2022. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/emma-bovary-as-a-victim-in-madame-bovary-55046/>