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An Applied and Analyzed Perspective of Desiree’s Baby by Kate Chopin


Written and published in 1893, Desiree’s Baby reflects the general treatment of men to race, looking down to the Blacks and those who are with some percentage of the race. They are considered to be accursed, to be slaves, as the closing of the story revealed. Kate Chopin painted in her short story how racism could destroy the strong bond of love.

Desiree’s Baby is about Armand, a slave owner who married a young woman of unknown ancestry because she was adopted by a childless couple, yet he accepted her as he was so in love. When she bore their first baby, the father showed pride in him but eventually forsook the mother and child as the baby was growing to reveal that he has the blood of the black race in him. Armand’s treatment towards his family could be due to the shame that he is not purely white as he always believed. The story does not mention when Armand first learned about his mother’s letter that revealed she was of the black race, however, the fact that the letter was kept with Desiree’s, shows that he knew about this fact. It could have been that the young husband found it difficult to accept this fact and blamed the color of his son to his wife instead.

Finding out that he was of the same race as the slaves that he owned, Armand might have struggled with the thought of his acceptance by the woman that she loved. It could be that he found it better for him to make her feel that he does not love her any more than for him to face the possible rejection he would take from his wife. Moreover, his son would be an undeniable proof of the race that will soon come to be questioned if he clings to his family. Of pride and love, Armand chose to hide behind his pride in a world where Blacks were condemned.

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