Character Analysis: Mathilde Loisel Versus Mrs Mallard


This essay presents the character analysis and compares two famous female characters found in short stories. Mathilde Loisel was a lead character in The Necklace a short story written by Guy de Maupassant in 1884. The major personality attribute which this character has been known for is her urge to be rich at all costs. On the other hand, Mrs. Mallard was a lead character in The Story of an Hour written by Kate Chopin in 1894. The tabooed feeling of freedom and independence after the death of her husband makes Mrs. Mallard a noticeable character.

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Summarizing the Roles

Mathilde Loisel wanted to be a rich person but she was born in the family of clerks and then married a clerk. Once she was invited to a party which she did not have anything nice to wear for. She convinced her husband to get her a dress but since she did not have complementing jewelry, she asked her rich friend Mme. Forestier and borrowed a necklace. She was thrilled as everyone was looking at her with lust. Then the necklace got lost, and the couple had to spend 10 years in the poverty to compensate the loss as they had to purchase a new one. Once all the debt was paid, Loisel went to Mme. Forestier and disclosed all the mishap. Mme. Forestier then informed Mathilde that the necklace was fake and not at all worth the amount that Mathilde had assumed.

Louise Mallard was portrayed as a timid wife of 18th century who had heart trouble. The care was seemingly required to deliver the news of her husbands death. However, after hearing it, Mrs. Mallard did not feel the way she was supposed to; what is more, she even had a feeling of joy which could be considered as a taboo (Chopin 169). Such reaction was caused by the fact that she could eventually become free to live her life and her husband would no longer be there to govern her. Later, Mr. Mallard returned home, and the lady died as she could not bear the shock.

Analysis of Roles

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The character analysis of Mathilde clearly indicates that she did not have much care and affection for her husband but had such for her status. She was selfish, greedy and thankless (Tampake 2). She was dominating in her matrimonial relationship as her husband submissively fulfilled her monetary demands. Mathilde also used to think that she was made for the material things (Maupassant 2).

Mrs. Mallard was a weak personality. She had mixed feelings when she first heard about the husbands death. Her death in the end revealed that she was not happy with the dominating nature of her husband, and, therefore, she did not react to the news of her husbands death as the women usually do (Eident 2).

Comparing and Contrasting the Roles

In the marriage relations, Mathilde was dominating, while Mrs. Mallard was submissive. Both characters have similarities as both were discontented in their lives (Scooterist). They valued their desires and freedom more than the foundations of the family, and both were not happy with their married life for the different reasons. Mathilde had issues due to lower socio-economic status, whereas Mrs. Mallard was not happy being forced to live in a relationship where her freedom was lost.


This essay presented the character analysis, compare and contrast of Mathilde Loisel and Mrs. Mallard. It has been revealed that both characters focused more on their desires and freedom, as compared to their affection for their husbands. The former were not happy with their lives due to different reasons: Mathilde Loisels was lack of money, and Mrs. Mallards was lack of freedom.

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