External Conflict In Desiree's Baby By Kate Chopin

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“Desiree’s Baby” is a short story written by Kate Chopin. The story is about a girl that is found with unknown origin and is adopted by Monsieur and Madame Valmonde. Since they were not able to conceive a child they accepted her as a gift from God and named her Desiree. Eighteen years later, Armand Aubigny falls in love with Desiree and without investigating her origin, immediately marries her. She later gives birth to a baby boy that brings joy to the couple. At three months old the baby boy’s skin darkens and Armand accuses Desiree of not being white. Desiree writes to Madame Valmonde about the situation and responds to go back home with her along with her child. Desiree asks Armand if she should leave and Armand agrees. Later on, as Armand burns her clothes and memories from her, he finds a letter from Armand’s mother to his father stating that she is in fact black. Armand was so worried about his name that he blamed Desiree when it was him who was of black heritage. In “Desiree’s Baby”, Kate Chopin uses conflicts, symbols, and irony to develop this short story. A conflict is a problem or struggle between two opposing forces in a short story ( A Glossary of Literary Terms 3). Internal as well as external conflicts appear in the short story “Desiree’s Baby”. The external conflict is person …show more content…
A symbol is a person, place, or thing that represents something beyond itself, most often something concrete or tangible that represents an abstract idea ( A Glossary of Literary Terms 2). A symbol in “Desiree’s Baby” would be the bonfire made by Armand. This represents his anger and how he gets rid of Desiree’s belongings and memories. Textual evidence is from page 4 when the story reads “... and it was he who dealt out to a half dozen negroes the material which kept this fire ablaze” (Chopin 4). A bonfire destroys and erases, representing how he is responsible for the destruction of his family (LitCharts

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