March 29, 2012
Prof. J. Wynter
In Desiree’s Baby, Kate Chopin shows how over valuing of white race and status can destroy a relationship and a family. Race and status are intangible ideas humans make up to segregate one another and should not be valued higher than a human life, but this is not the case in "Desiree’s Baby.”
Destructive behavior begins when the child is three months old; rumors of the baby’s race spark Armand’s imperious exacting nature. He notices the baby appears to be of mixed race. At first he deals with the issue by avoiding the baby and Desiree. Then one day as Desiree was watching over her child, she looked at the child, comparing his skin color to that of the …show more content…
He should be mortified. He had everything, yet because of his high value of white race and status, he through every good thing he had away. Now he has to deal with the shame and embarrassment of himself and shunning his wife and child away. Even if he tried to win them back he cannot get them back now because they have perished. Now all that he was so proud of before is lost. He knows the truth of his mixed race. He can no longer be a plantation owner form society’s point of view. He has pushed everyone away and unintentionally self-destructed all because he values race and status so highly.
In putting his values into intangible ideas, it leads to destruction; in Armand’s case he destroyed his family and his own name by placing a higher value on race and status than his own wife and child. If Desiree did not buy into Armand’s high value of race and status, her and the baby might have went to live with Madame Valmonde instead of killing herself and the baby. Chopin uses Armand as a lesson to teach society how one should be more careful about what is