True and false values in the Guy De Maupassant's story "The diamond necklace"

Essay by rave_my_wayCollege, UndergraduateA, December 2003

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Guy De Maupassant's story "The Diamond Necklace" tells us a story about a poor girl who has wrong values in her life. She loves money, jewels, but not people. Throughout the story the main heroine Matilda Loisel makes a number of ironic discoveries. One night she goes to the ball and, pretending that she is someone she is not, she borrows a diamond necklace from her friend. She loses it at the end of the night and borrows money to buy a new one. It costs her 10 years of hard work, life in poverty, and more importantly youth and beauty to pay for one night of triumph, and at the end to find out that the necklace wasn't even real. Matilda is as fake as the necklace she borrowed from her friend, and she gets punished for that.

Only after reading the story till the end we understand the importance of the title in this story.

Looking at it for the first time a reader might think that this is a story about somebody rich, who can afford such an expensive jewel as diamond necklace. But this is not the case. The main character Matilda Loisel is poor and so is her husband, and "she had neither frocks nor jewels, nothing."(298) The irony of the title is that there is only one truly diamond necklace in the story, the one Mr. and Mrs. Loisel bought to replace Mme. Forestier's false necklace, the one that completely changed their lives. A reader may ask why couldn't Matilda tell her friend the truth? What was she so afraid of? Perhaps, she thought that Mme. Forestier would tell everybody that the necklace that Matilda wore that night didn't belong to her and that she's from the lower class. But that...