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Confused Values in The Necklace

Confused Values in The Necklace

To some people, class distinction is very important. Usually we think of class distinction as being of most importance to the higher classes, those who can afford to look down on the rest of the world, but sometimes this concept is of most importance to those who occupy the lower steps of society. These are the people who are stuck where they are, but feel that their true places are at the top of the social ladder. The character of Mme. Loisel in Guy de Moupassant’s story “The Necklace” is one such person. She is of the lower classes, but she holds a romantic idea of what life at the top consists of, and it is one of these ideas that eventually gets her into trouble.

The story starts out by describing Mme. Loisel and the contrasts between the world she lives in and the one she dreams of. Her life consists of simple clothes, a plain household full of functional things, and simple, healthy food. She has one servant in her house, her husband holds a good, if unglamourous, job, and they are in general a middle class family. This life is…

Lack of Forgiveness in Lucille Clifton’s poem Forgiving My Father

The title of Lucille Clifton’s poem, “forgiving my father”, seems to be in sharp opposition with the poem itself. There seems to be no forgiveness, yet the title claims that it is there. The entire poem focuses on the debt of the author’s father. “it is Friday.” she says, “we have come to the paying of the bills.” (1-2). But perhaps it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is literally Friday, perhaps she just means it is the end, and maybe the debt isn’t one of money, but of love. Clifton is using a monetary debt to symbolize a debt of love and affection. She uses this symbolism to show that by the end of the poem, she has forgiven her father, but it is not forgiveness as we would normally think of it.

The poem begins by talking about how it is payday, but the father, as a ghost, is asking for more time to pay. How can a ghost pay anything? Even if he could get the extension, he would never be able to pay anything because he is dead. So why does she say it is payday? Perhaps the answer lies in lines 7 and 8 when she says, “my mother’s hand opens in her early grave and I hold it out …

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