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Desiree's Baby by Kate Chopin - Essay Example

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The story, Desiree’s Baby was written by Kate Chopin, and is about the struggles as well as the problems of racial discrimination even after the slaves were liberated. The white people still look at the darker-skinned people as a group of lower-ranking humans, and being born…
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Desirees Baby by Kate Chopin
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Desiree’s Baby The story, Desiree’s Baby was written by Kate Chopin, and is about the struggles as well as the problems of racial discrimination even after the slaves were liberated. The white people still look at the darker-skinned people as a group of lower-ranking humans, and being born with a hint of this darker color would prove to bring the said person down the ranks. Even more surprising is that some whites were able to bear children with dark skin, and this could either make or break a relationship of a couple. Such is the whole premise of this narrative.
In this story, Desiree, the wife of a rich man named Armand Aubigny gave birth to a baby with a dark skin tone. At first, having a baby made the couple happy, and the husband even more tender. However, after a few months, the once loving Armand became cold and distant, due to the baby being born with a very dark skin. Armand accused Desiree of not being white, since their child was not white (Chopin 206). No matter how much Desiree pleaded, her husband thought of her as a slave, which made her feel even worse and depressed. She went back home to her mother, and the last blow was when her husband did not even turn around to say goodbye. Months later, just when Armand was burning the remnants of his married life, including her letters and clothes, he stumbled upon the knife-hitting truth: a letter from his mother to his father revealed that it was actually him, who has the blood of a slave race, concluding the story of how his son came to look like one.
During the time the story was written, it can be deduced that there were already interracial marriages between the blacks and the whites. However, it was still being frowned upon by the society, which made some relationships fall apart, like in the story of Desiree and Armand. Even though Desiree has hands whiter than Armand’s, she was still presumed to be a descendant of slaves, since she was the one who bore his child (Chopin 206). Because people were not fully aware of this, many people would marry and would be surprised to have a dark-skinned baby. This proved to be the measure of Armand’s love for Desiree, and sending her away would not give him any redemption after learning that it was he, not her who has the blood of slaves (Chopin 208). A reason why Armand was never told of his true identity by his parents was in order for him to be able to live at peace with himself. It can be seen in this narrative that aside from the prejudice blacks and their descendants receive from the whites, there is also the feeling of being alienated once a person learns of his or her family history.
Work Cited
Chopin, Kate. "Desirees Baby." Chopin, Kate. The Awakening. London: Bibliolis Books Ltd., 2010. 202-208. Read More
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