Desiree's Baby: A Gothic Tale of Love and Prejudice

Topics: Kate Chopin

The southern gothic story, Desiree’s Baby, by Kate Chopin was wrote brilliantly to explore love, race and prejudice. The story starts with Madame Valmonde talking about her daughter, Desiree’s past. How Desiree was abandoned by her real parents, and Monsieur Valmonde had found her and brought her home. When Desiree was eighteen, Armand saw her and immediately fell in love. Madame Valmonde told Armand about her background, but Armand did not care. After getting married they had a boy and at three months, the child looks were of mixed race.

So in despair, Desiree asked Armand about the baby, coldly, he told her that the baby is not white, which means that Desiree is not white and he tells her to take the baby and leave. Later, Armand burns everything belonging to Desiree and the baby. While burning everything Armand discovers a letter from his mother to his father where he finds out it was not Desiree who carried the Negroid blood but Armand.

There was a sense of wonder of why Chopin designed the character this way and what was the message she was trying to send. I enjoyed reading this story immensely because it had all the staple of gothic fiction, like dark romances, tragic events of depression and sadness. The scenery of “ a sad looking place [with] the roof that came down steep and black like a cowl”, “wide galleries that encircled the house [and] big, solemn oaks” gave unarguably a dark atmosphere.

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Kate Chopin sets the tone of the story in a distinctive southern gothic theme. There is also a strong southern culture rooted into the story which was fascinating to read.

In that time of period the family name, respect in society was very important. If a wealthy man was married to a lady with

African American blood it would bring great shame to his family’s name. The way Armand broke Disree’s heart was horrific, even him being hurt he still chose his image and status over his wife and child. He genuinely thought ?…

Paragraph On When I Was A Baby

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Desiree's Baby: A Gothic Tale of Love and Prejudice. (2019, Dec 05). Retrieved from

Desiree's Baby: A Gothic Tale of Love and Prejudice
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