An Adventure In Paris By Guy De Maupassant

1110 words - 4 pages

​In the short story “An Adventure in Paris” by Guy De Maupassant an unnamed woman seeks for adventure, love, and excitement. An unnamed narrator starts to explain the inner nature and curiosity of a woman. The story transitions to the point of view of an unnamed lawyer’s wife which allows us to see her deepest desire to travel to Paris and be part of the lavishing life she has seen in the magazines. To escape her regular routine she makes a plan to go to Paris; however, her family members are only middle class and cannot help her fulfill her desire to live the life of a celebrity, fame, and fashion. Just when her trip seems to be monotonous she comes across the chance to live the life of an extravagant person. This chance happens when she meets Jean Varin, a wealthy author, in a store wanting to purchase a Japanese figurine. When Varin decides that the figurine is too expensive the lawyer’s wife steps up to buy the figurine which causes Varin to notice her. She flirtatiously invites herself into Varin’s daily activities which intrigue Varin. As the day closes she invites herself to Varin’s house and has an affair with Varin; however, she doesn’t feel she is satisfied because of his many needs. She anxiously waits till morning to come so that she can leave which only confuses Varin. When Varin asks her why she is leaving after all they have been through she states that she wanted to know what depravity felt like; however, it was not what she expected. The central idea of the story is about a woman’s psychological desire for romance, adventure, and an opulent lifestyle that leads to curiosity and the immoral act of adultery.
​There are two central characters to the story that relate to the central idea. These characters are the unnamed lawyer’s wife and Jean Varin. The lawyer’s wife shows a strong interest in the unknown or things she feels she lacks in her own life. Her mind and body may be in her own life, “but her heart beat with unsatisfied curiosity and with longing for the unknown.” (Maupassant, 512`) She feels that these feelings can be conquered when she travels to Paris and experience the life of, “…parties, of dresses, and carious entertainments…” (Maupassant, 512) She expresses the desire for romance and the opulent lifestyle that comes with fame and fortune. Jean Varin is a successful author who appears to be involved in his own life. At first he does not notice the lawyer’s wife until she makes a scene about buying a figurine that he had thought about buying. As he eyes her and tries to understand her he comes to the understanding that, “…a woman who gives fifteen hundred francs for a knickknack is not to be me with every day.” (Maupassant, 513) As the lawyer’s wife grabs the attention of Varin she seizes the opportunity to tag along on Varin’s day as she asks, “What do you generally do at this time?” (Maupassant, 514) This opportunity enables her to fulfill her psychological desires and her curiosity; however, the opportunity is not...

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