"The Garden Lodge" By Willa Cather

1165 words - 5 pages

Cather's “The Garden Lodge” is about a woman named Caroline Noble whose husband, Howard, asked her if she would like to demolish their old garden lodge and replace it with a summer house. The conflict in the story is Caroline is not sure if she wants to knock down the old garden lodge because it brings back memories of when opera singer Raymond d'Esquerre, spent a month at their place. The resolution is that Caroline decides to go on with building the summer house and demolishing the garden lodge. The author uses flashback to explain how Caroline grew up and also when she reminiscences about her time with Raymond.
The characters in “The Garden Noble” are both flat and round characters, who help characterize Caroline throughout the story, especially when the story flashbacks to her childhood. Willa Cather tells rather than shows her characters.
1. Caroline Noble- She is the protagonist/hero and her plausible motivation for not wanting to build the new summer house was her musical past and how the garden lodge reminded her of that. She quickly says to how it would be “ almost a shame, doesn't it, after d'Esquerre has used it”(Cather 3) as a good excuse for not replacing the lodge. She eventually changes her mind after she had “slept over it”(6). Caroline is a static and is a round character being described as “paramountly cool-headed, slow of impulse, and disgustingly practical” (1) and musical with even more characterization that makes her stand out more than the other characters.
2. Howard Noble- He is Caroline's husband and also would be considered the antagonist in this particular story. He does not understand his wife's connection to the lodge and begans taunting her by saying “Why I'd sacrifice the whole place to see that come to pass”(3) when Caroline gets “sentimental”(3) about it. He is a flat?static character who does not affect Caroline's decision of removing the lodge, only suggests it.
3. Raymond d'Esquerre- A round/static character who also serves as a foil, d'Esquerre is used as part of Caroline's motivation not to replace the lodge. He was a guest at the Noble's house and took residence in the lodge for a month. Cather makes his role in the story important and significant to the decision of whether or not to remove the lodge because “report went that at almost any hour the sound of the tenor's voice and of Caroline's crashing accompaniment could be heard floating through the open windows...”(1), which meant that Caroline was constantly collaborating with him and helped her reawaken her love of music, and also showing how his musical influence contrasted with Caroline's decision.
4. Auguste- He is Caroline's father and is a round/static character. Auguste “ neglected his duties to write orchestral compositions”(2) and was determined to make his daughter a famous pianist. In the end she did not so, making her “another item in his long list of disappointments...”(2). He wanted his daughter to be something he was not and...

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