Essay Example on Quest to Social Climbing In Sentimental Education Gustave Flaubert









Literature and Composition Quest to Social Climbing In Sentimental Education Gustave Flaubert portrays society and class as elements of destruction on the characters The author favors magnificent detail as he includes an immense degree of vivid descriptions and evades superficiality and excessive commentary People's motives were primarily driven by social climbing opportunities Even class motivates the narrator Frederick Moreau as he uses women and jobs to pursue his class endeavors The protagonist Frederic Moreau has a demeanor which represents how men of the nineteenth century disregarded authority Since Madame Arnoux a woman who catches Frederic s attention at first glance is his motivation she remains the center of all of his hopes and dreams Due to this overpowering force Frederic is unable to have independent ideas that do not correlate with Madame Arnoux 

He also represents the bourgeoisie of France since he is reluctant to care for world injustice as he immerses himself in his undeserved wealth In the nineteenth century there was a common myth about how determined youthful people gave Paris strength but Frederic Moreau is unable to uncover his talent because he has grown accustomed to believing that every act must relate back to Madame Arnoux and her sake Although Frederic himself is not a part of the idealistic group that will bring upon the best of Paris his acquaintances and friends had great potential to do good Those acquaintances and friends made a call to action to stop the nature of superiority while Frederic carelessly continues on with his leisure The novel portrays Gustave Flaubert s perspective on the barbarous episode of Revolution of 1848 when the author introduces a man who is a part of the working class named Sénécal who starts supporting tyranny suddenly after proposing reformations of economic equality and abolishing supremacy 

The deceptive nature of those years are vividly illustrated when Frederic Moreau asks a man from the working class why there is no hostility and protest The man replied we are not fools the rich must save themselves Many readers misinterpret time progression since the novel presents Frederic Moreau s life and his pursuit of euphoria Events that occur such as Frederic s first encounter with Madame Arnoux the dinner party and his relationship with Rosanette all seem relatively close together in the time since Flaubert does not make the shift in time or events distinct Oftentimes conversations are ambiguous as the speaker is not addressed and remarks are left questioned about what the context of the text is In Madame Bovary the protagonist Emma Bovary is a middle class girl who continuously attempts to advance to the upper class using her husband affairs and accumulated wealth but fails to do so Emma Bovary and Frederick Moreau mirror each other s characters since they are not portrayed as idealistic protagonists and be a part of the upper class Although Emma is similar to Frederick in many aspects she would be even more like him if she was wealthier educated and had the freedom of a man instead of being a bourgeois woman stuck in a dull marriage and life Their differences however lies in their commitment to their ambitions The audience could sense Emma s despair and her wish to chase her dreams of escaping her life of marriage with Charles and going to live with Rodolphe but for Frederick he is indecisive not being able to commit to one job and one relationship Frederick Moreau s keen eye for detail is similar to a photographer capturing special moments by focusing on fine details 

The author's use of capturing the entire narrative scene through a focused lens portrays the setting in a precise manner The audience sees through Frederick Moreau s eyes inspecting him while he wanders the Latin quarter and notices the huge walls of the colleges the flapping of wings in cages and the noise made by the turning of a lathe All of these elements used to paint the setting mend together to create the scene as if everything was happening simultaneously Flaubert successfully compresses events occurring over a length of time into a single scene These subtle elements at some point are both vital and insignificant in shaping the theme of class and society Sentimental Education is not only a novel about politics and history but also about the life of an indecisive middle class man named Frederic Moreau The protagonist cherishes his personal satisfaction over everything else so throughout the novel his lust for women drives his ambitions Despite Frederic s interest in Madame Arnoux throughout the entire novel and after all the sacrifices he made to pursue her she does not help switch his selfishness around to generosity Frederic Moreau s character embodies the nature of people during the nineteenth century wanting romance wealth and power

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