Typologies of Maupassant’s story characters Cover Image

Analyse de quelques types de personnages dans les contes de Maupassant
Typologies of Maupassant’s story characters

Author(s): Diana Rînciog
Subject(s): Literary Texts
Published by: Universitatea »Babes Bolyai« Cluj - Facultatea de St. Economice si Gestiunea Afacerilor
Keywords: characters; Madame Bovary; portrayal technique.

Summary/Abstract: The present paper seeks to analyze a few illustrative examples and make an inventory of the typologies of Maupassant’s story characters in order to reveal the true subtlety of the psychological art of this Norman writer (raised, in the absence of his father, by an oversensitive mother, but taking advantage of the literary guidance and the protection provided by Gustave Flaubert, his artistic father figure). Indeed, the human soul, especially a woman’s soul, unveils its thousand reflections in Guy de Maupassant’s writings, which depict all kinds of characters, from the weakest to the most powerful ones, from the most naïve to the most determined and the meanest. As the manifesto-preface to the novel Pierre et Jean testifies, the art of concealing instead of overtly displaying enables the author to evoke instead of asserting, a technique which gives the readers the possibility/the task/the privilege of interpreting, of becoming involved in the characters’ construction, contributing their own intuitions – a very modern aspect of Maupassant’s work. In his letters to Flaubert, the disciple receives his master’s appreciation, as in the case of the short story “Boule de Suif”, already considered by the author of Madame Bovary a “work of art” (in a letter to Maupassant, dated 1st February 1880). Stylistic peculiarities (the character portrayal technique, the comparison, the repetition, the art of the dialogue, the expressiveness of gestures, the symbolic objects etc.) put the finishing touches on Maupassant’s characters.

  • Issue Year: XIII/2014
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 169-181
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: French