Madame Bovary Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 60 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Madame Bovary.
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Search for Self

When Emma first marries Charles, she does not have a clear sense of identity. However, she knows that she does not want to be stuck on the farm for the rest of her life. Initially, she assumes that what she feels for Charles will develop into love and that she will become content to be a doctor's wife. Soon, though, when her feelings for Charles fail to materialize, she enters into a severe depression, feeling herself to be displaced and unable to endure the monotony of her life and marriage.

Class Consciousness

Emma's search for identity and fulfillment also centers on issues of class. Soon after she marries Charles and realizes that she cannot find contentment in her relationship with him, she begins to buy things for the house and for herself. Emma's spending, however, soon puts the family in debt. When she attends the ball...

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This section contains 396 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Madame Bovary Study Guide
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Novels for Students
Madame Bovary from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.