The main themes in Dsire’s Baby are racism, gender, and hypocrisy. Racism: Armand’s cruelty, both toward Dsire and those he enslaves, is based on entrenched ideas of race. Ironically, Armand himself turns out to have Black ancestry.
What does Desiree baby symbolize?
In grief and fear, Dsire takes the baby into the bayou, where they presumably die. In this sequence of events, the baby symbolizes both innocence and powerlessness.
What is Desiree’s baby summary?
Kate Chopin’s short story Dsire’s Baby examines the arbitrary hierarchies of race, gender, and class in the antebellum South. Dsire, an abandoned orphan who was adopted by wealthy plantation owners, has married Armand Aubigny, who owns a neighboring plantation.
Is Desiree’s baby Black?
People who see the baby have the sense it is different. Eventually they realize that the baby’s skin is the same color as that of a quadroon (one-quarter African)the baby has African ancestry. Because of Dsire’s unknown parents, Armand immediately assumes that she is part black.
How did desire come to the Valmonde family?
Dsire is the adopted daughter of the Valmonde family. Madame and Monsieur Valmonde have raised Dsire since she was a toddler when they found her by the plantation’s front gate. Despite the fact that her ancestry is unknown, Dsire has grown up to be the idol of Valmonde. She is a sweet, kind, affectionate girl.
What is the race of Armand’s mother?
The end of the story reveals that Armand’s mother, Madame Aubigny, was black, and so the appearance of his child is due to his heritage and not to Dsire’s mysterious background.
What is symbolic about Desiree’s death?
Desiree’s death is necessary for her because she feels the shame and pain of her unknown origins and therefore believes that she is the reason that the baby has African features.
Did Armand truly love Desiree?
In the beginning, Armand truly loved the idea of being with Desiree. His station in life was such that he could have all the things he desired, including Desiree. He did not care that she was adopted and that her heritage was unknown. … So, no, Armand was not truly in love with Desiree.
Who is Desiree’s mother?
Dsire is Monsieur and Madame Valmond’s adoptive daughter. No one knows who her family is, but we learn that she has straight brown hair, white skin, and gray eyes. She’s described as ‘beautiful and gentle, affectionate and sincere. ‘ She loves her husband Armand and the infant son they have together.
How did Armand’s father treat his slaves?
What is Armand’s reputation in the way he treats the slaves? Armand’s treatment of his slaves is directly related to his own personal happiness. He is presented as being a harsh man who works his slaves hard, yet when he has his child, he is so happy that he softens in his attitudes towards everybody.
Who is La Blanche in Dsire’s baby?
In Dsire’s Baby, La Blanche is a slave who is the mother of a quadroon boy who acts as a servant for the family. She may also be the mistress of Armand, who visits her cabin.
Is Armand mixed?
Irony in Desiree’s Baby occurs when Armand discovers that he is the one of mixed racial ancestry. In the short story says Armand will never know that his mother … In the letter that Armand reads from his mother reveals that it is actually Armand who was of African American descent, not Desiree.
Where does Desirees baby take place?
antebellum New Orleans Dsire’s Baby, short story by Kate Chopin, published in her collection A Night in Acadie in 1897. A widely acclaimed, frequently anthologized story, it is set in antebellum New Orleans and deals with slavery, the Southern social system, Creole culture, and the ambiguity of racial identity.
What happened to Desiree and her baby?
However, Chopin writes, She disappeared among the reeds and willows that grew thick along the banks of the deep, sluggish bayou; and she did not come back again. This line indicates that Desiree and her baby end up drowning in the bayou, which is a marshy lake common to Louisiana.
What does Madame Valmonde do when she sees the baby?
What does Madame Valmonde do with the baby when she sees it for the first time in four weeks? She lifts the baby and walks it over to the window, scanning it narrowly.
Is Desiree the biological daughter of Valmonde’s family?
The Valmondes do not have any children of their own, so Dsire is raised as their own child. Because she was abandoned, her family history is unknown, but since she has light skin, the family believes she is white. Years later, Armand Aubigny travels by the plantation and falls in love with her at first sight.
Why does Armand stop beating his slaves?
He lavishes the best material goods on Desiree and the baby. Later, the nicest thing we learn about him is that he stops beating his slaves after the birth of Desiree’s baby, presumably because he is so pleased to be a father. Armand’s unpleasant character qualities far outweigh his positive attributes.
Why had Armand’s mother never left France?
Why had Armand’s mother never left France? She was black and if she came to America she would be a slave. … He started of as a cruel and mean person to the slaves then he became loving, caring, and attentive when he got married.
Why has Armand’s treatment of his wife changed so suddenly?
Armand’s behavior towards Dsire in Dsire’s Baby changes suddenly when he realizes that his son is mixed race.
What did Armand have put on the bonfire?
He watches from his hallway as they burn Desiree’s velvet, silk and lace gowns, her priceless layette, her bonnets and gloves, her embroideries, and the letters she wrote to him during their courtship.
How was Armand after the baby was born?
After the baby is born, Armand is the proudest father; in fact, he is so happy that he becomes more lenient with his slaves.
How does Armand treat Desiree?
Expert Answers While Armand is married happily to Desiree and enjoying the expectation of their coming baby and the final ecstasy of the infant’s presence, he treats his slaves with kind good humor, even turning a blind eye when one slave feigns injury so as to gain rest from his labors: Even…
Why is the baby unnamed in Desiree’s Baby?
‘ No one knew anything about her status or her family history; therefore, she had no family name, in the sense that no one could ascertain whether she came from an impoverished, middle-class, or wealthy background. Because Desiree had no established background, Monsieur Aubigny considered her ‘nameless. ‘
What is the irony of Desiree’s Baby?
The story ends with a twist of situational irony: Armand discovers too late that it is he (and not his wife) who has black heritage. Armand acted upon the misjudgment that Dsire, and her unknown past, were to blame for the appearance of their baby.
What truth does Armand later discover in an old letter?
What truth does Armand later discover in an old letter? His mother was of African descent.
Why is Armand so angry at Desiree?
Once they had a son, the readers can see Armand’s behavior start to change in the story. … Due to Armand’s racism, he lost Desiree and his son because once he found out that his son was mixed, he really angry at Desiree and accuses her of being mixed because of her unknown heritage.
Where is Armand from originally?
Kievan Rus As a human. Armand is born in 1481 in the former Kievan Rus’ to the acclaimed hunter Ivan. His original name is Andrei.
What is Armand burning?
At the end of the story, Armand burns Dsire’s possessions. The bonfire symbolizes both Armand’s anger and desire to rid himself of Dsire, as well as his passion for his lost wife, which was described as a prairie fire at the beginning of the story. A bonfire destroys and erases.