In the novel Baldini is portrayed as a man from the past, unable to cope with the changes occurring around him in Paris. Baldini is very disturbed by the changes taking place in Paris "People reading books, even women”. The new intellectualism and humanism, not to mention the rise of the bourgeoisie, threatens everything that Baldini believes in and values. Baldini represents the ideas of ‘tradition’ and ‘reluctance to change’. This is shown by his disgust at the way Grenouille initially displays his talent for perfumes by mixing Amor and Psyche.
In the book, genius is greater than convention and tradition, as Grenouille, who is naturally talented in smell, overpowers Baldini, who has had years of experience and training. Baldini also represents the theme of enlightenment, as a character that is never truly ‘enlightened’ through his encounter with Grenouille.
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He represents the part of society, which is against the enlightenment period, and are not willing to accept the new theories, which are being proposed. This idea of being ‘firmly set in the past’ is one of the key ideologies that Baldini represents throughout the novel. He was very adamant to not follow the ‘new-fangeled nonsense’ of the enlightenment period, that he would rather continue his old processes that are gaining him no profits or results. This ideology to not follow the enlightenment period’s views, leads to his declining business, which has gained him no herons. This is described by the phrase “silver herons spewed less and less frequently”, referring to the fact that Baldini is losing his