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Au Bonheur Des Dames = the Ladies' Delight Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 70 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Au Bonheur Des Dames = the Ladies' Delight.
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Themes

Survival of the Fittest

This novel repeatedly presents the Darwinian idea that only the strongest survive. As Au Bonheur des Dames grows and becomes more and more successful, the neighborhood shops are driven out of business one by one. On several different occasions during the novel, Mouret explains why his department store is so successful, while the old-style trade shops refuse to change their ways to keep up with the times. In not being willing (or able) to change, the old shops prove to be weaker and therefore not able to survive in the new Paris.

The concept of survival of the fittest is also demonstrated on a different level in the silk department of the store. At first, Hutin undermines Robineau, even getting Bouthemont hired for the buyer position from the outside to prevent Robineau's promotion. Hutin wants Robineau's job. Once Hutin is under-buyer, he starts attacking Bouthemont...

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This section contains 1,205 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Au Bonheur Des Dames = the Ladies' Delight Study Guide
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Au Bonheur Des Dames = the Ladies' Delight from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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