The Problem(s) with Emma

16 Jun

1.  “Accustomed to calm aspects of life, she turned, on the contrary, to those of excitement.  She loved the sea only for the sake of it’s storms, and the green fields only when broken up by ruins.”   I don’t know about you, reader, but the older I get, the more I enjoy a good calm.   So, Emma craves adventure she doesn’t have.

2.  “For six months Emma made her hands dirty with books from old lending libraries.”   Apparently, Emma saw cheap thrilling novels as reality, later wondering just why her life or marriage just didn’t measure up.  Emma’s foundation was based on apparitions and falsities.

3.  “This nature, positive in the midst of its enthusiasms, that had loved the church for the sake of flowers, and music for the words of the songs, and literature for its passional stimulus, rebelled against the mysteries of faith as it grew irritated by discipline, a thing antipathetic to her constitution.”    Although I think we are all “irritated by discipline” at times, we know that it is good, nourishing soil, suitable for personal growth.   Emma despises that which would improve her character.

4. “As the intimacy of their life grew deeper, the greater became the gulf that separated her from him.”    This is referring to her marriage to Charles, of course.  She becomes discontented, looking for “greener pastures.”   Emma has a roving eye.

These problems might not make life very easy for Emma.   We shall see.  I’m forecasting a stormy future.  I think you could add some additional problems Emma might have, fellow reader.   What do you see a potential for problems.

(Quotes from Chapter 6 and 7, Part 1)


Posted by on June 16, 2012 in Madame Bovary


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2 responses to “The Problem(s) with Emma

  1. Jean

    June 16, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    I quoted that line about the ocean too! She really aggravates me; I do not sympathize with people who have plenty they *could* do, but they just won’t and then complain that they’re bored.

  2. Steph (@FABR_Steph)

    June 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm

    All of this can’t be good. I think that there are deep reasons behind her insecurities. I am at a place in the novel where I am doing a count on how many men she has obsessed over. It is more than having a roving eye. I think that she is just looking for something to make herself feel good about herself. That seems to be clothes and accessories at one point, then the perfect wife (although short lived), men, etc. As Shakespeare would say, she is a piece of work.


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