Comparative Essay the Necklace and the Joy Luck Club

Comparative Essay the Necklace and the Joy Luck Club
📌Category: Books, The Joy Luck Club
📌Words: 451
📌Pages: 2
📌Published: 22 June 2022

Some dreams are not worth pursuing because they might be unrealistic and harmful. The characters in The Necklace and The Joy Luck Club all had dreams. Mathilde dreamed of living a luxurious lifestyle. Jing-Mei and her mother Suyuan Woo worked to make a child prodigy of Jing-Mei. Their aspirations made them realize that they are striving for an impossible dream that is negatively affecting them. The characters' dreams were driven by external influences. However, dreams can also help you know more about yourself. Mathilde in The Necklace and Jing-Mei and Suyuan Woo in The Joy Luck Club strive for something better, only to find that their dreams are out of reach.

Upper-class aristocracy, middle-class bourgeoisie, and lower or working class were the three primary social classes that existed in 19th-century France. People were believed to stay in a class based on their wealth, authority, working conditions, and education once they were born into it. During that period, rapid changes had different results for different classes. The wealth gap between rich and poor in Paris was widespread despite urbanization and industrialization, which improved the quality of living for the average Parisian. In French society, it was expected to be of high status, and “women with limited financial resources found it much more difficult” to do so. They were expected to be obedient and submissive and manage the household and children. Middle-class women grew frustrated staying within the boundaries of their homes. We can see this in The Necklace when Mr. Loisel presents the invitation card to his wife expecting her to be delighted since she does not go out at all. To express themselves and represent their social status, the middle-class bourgeoisie women would adorn themselves with expensive jewelry, accessories, and clothing. They did this because they rarely left their homes. Women often aimed to marry wealthy men as “a woman’s status depended largely on her access to money.”

Mathilde was the daughter of a poor family and hence had no dowry so she let herself be married to a clerk. She felt that she was born to enjoy the life of the upper-class aristocracy. “She was  unhappy as if she had really fallen from a higher station” and “Mathilde suffered ceaselessly, feeling herself born to enjoy all delicacies and all luxuries.” The main focus of her attention is the “decorated antechambers illuminated by a candelabra”, “delicious dishes” and “chatting at five o'clock with intimate friends and famous, sought-after men in perfumed reception rooms.” Mathilde is solely concerned with her looks, hunger for money, despair, and desire. When she receives an invitation to a party, she instead gets disappointed and claims to her husband that she has nothing to put on her back. Mr. Loisel then offers to buy her a new dress using the money he put aside for himself. Mathilde believes she was borned to become of the upper class and was disheartened with how plain her life was.

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