【#】A Respectable Woman Summary Exercise Questions and Answers

Unit 2 A Respectable Woman by Kate Chopin

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Unit 2 A Respectable Woman Summary Class 12

Characters: 

> Three major characters: Gaston Baroda, Mrs. Baroda, Gouvernail

This story begins at the Gauston Baroda's sugarcane plantation in Louisiana. The theme of the story projects the mental conflict between personal emotion and social duty. 


          Gauston Baroda owns a sugarcane plantation in Louisiana. He is married, and his wife is characterized as Mrs. Baroda, and they are living a happy life.


          The story begins with Gaston Baroda's declaration to his wife that his friend Gouvernail is coming to his house to spend a week or two. His wife Mrs. Baroda doesn't like this as they have been very busy all winter, and she was hoping for rest and a good time during the pleasure. Mrs. Baroda has never seen his husband's friend, gouvernail, although she knows that he was his husband a college friend and now a journalist.


          When Gouvernail arrived, Mrs. Baroda found him totally different from her imagination. She liked him in their first meeting. Why does she like Gouvernail? She doesn't have a satisfactory answer to this great question. Gouvernail doesn't have any brilliant and promising characteristics as her husband did. He is not talkative and expressive, most of the time he remains silent and listens to the conversation between the husband and wife. He is not adventurous either because he dislikes the idea of fishing and hunting. Also, he doesn't make any attempt to convince her, but still she likes him.


          Gouvernail personality puzzles Mrs. Baroda, but she finds him a lovable and inoffensive fellow. In the beginning, she leaves Gouvernail along with his husband, but as time passes she begins to spend her time with Gouvernail, especially on his works. In fact, Mrs. Baroda falls in love with Gouvernail. But How can she express her love towards him? As she is a married, respectable woman in the eyes of the society. Her personal emotions and personal feelings urge her to express her love for him, but the realization of social rules, ethics, and morality does not let her do so. Therefore, she is trapped between the mental conflict of her personal emotions and social rules and regulations.


          Gouvernail was staying a week longer with them. When she gets this news, she doesn't like this idea, as she finds it difficult to resist herself in his presence. She was him to go from there so that she could remain a respectable woman. As she is unable to resist his presence, she decides to leave the place by visiting her Aunt's house until Gouvernail is gone. 


          Before leaving the house, the next morning, she sits alone in the garden on a bench. She is confused over her all feelings, Gouvernail sees her and sits next to her, not knowing what is going on in her mind. He speaks to her about their college days. For the first time, he talks freely. Mrs. Baroda doesn't listen to his words, she wants to draw him closer and touch his lips and face with her fingers, but she cannot, she has to resist her feelings as she has her society, morality, and ethics behind her. So she couldn't express her love towards Gouvernail. 


          The next morning, she leaves for the city and doesn't return until Gouvernail departs from her house. The time passes and Gauston wants to invite Gourvernail to their plantation, and she agrees to invite him before the year ends. She said that she had overcome her dislike for Gouvernail which he doesn't deserve and promised Gaston to be nice to him this time.


A Respectable Woman Exercise Class 12

Understanding the Text


Answer The following questions.

a. Why was Mrs, Baroda unhappy with the information about Gouvernail's visit to their farm?

➽ Mrs. Baroda was looking forward to a period of unbroken rest, now, and undistributed tete-a-tete with her husband but when his husband informed her that his friend Gouvernail was coming for a week or two on their plantation, Mrs. Baroda was unhappy.


b. How was Gouvernail different from Mrs. Baroda's Expectations?

➽ According to Mrs. Baroda's expectation Gouvernail is tall, slim, and cynical with eye-glasses, and his hands in his pockets but in reality he is presented as slim enough, but wasn't very tall nor very cynical, neither he wears eyeglasses nor carries his hands in his pockets. Hence, in this way, Gouvernail was different from Mrs. Baroda's expectations.

A Respectable Woman by Kate Chopin

c. How does Mrs. Baroda compare Gouvernail with her husband?

➽ Mrs. Baroda tried to change Gouvernail's solitary habit because she expected him to be more fascinating, interesting, clever, mute, and a man of ideas but in reality he was mute, and he made no direct appeal or even self-esteem.

She became chatty, friendly, and social with him to make him feel at home and try changing his solitary habits.


e. How does Gaston disagree with his wife on Gouvernail's character?

➽ According to Mrs. Baroda, Gouvernail is less interesting, not clever, less fascinating, and quiet in character. Still, Gaston disagrees with his wife as Gouvernail rather than being interesting, fascinating, clever talkative, and a fellow rather than being ruined by overwork.


f. Why is Gaston surprised with his wife's expression towards the end of the story?

➽ Gaston was surprised by his wife's expression towards the end of the story as she invited Gouvernail to visit them again before the year ended.



Reference to the context

A respectable woman questions and answers

a. What is the cause of conflict in Mrs. Baroda's mind? What role does Mrs. Baroda's “being a respectable woman” play in the story?

➽ The cause of conflict in Mrs. Baroda's mind is that she has some emotional attraction to Gouvernail.

Mrs. Baroda seems to be attracted to Gouvernail but controls her urge to touch Gouvernail with the sensitive tips of her finger upon his face or lips, but being a respectable woman she is probably afraid of what might society think of her.


b. Sketch the character of Gouvernail and contrast it with Gaston.

➽ In the story Gouvernail's character has been characterized as a lovable, inoffensive fellow who was shy, quiet, and a heavy smoker with less promising traits and less brilliant traits. Whereas, Gaston has been characterized as a social, frank, and friendly gut with brilliant and promising traits.

Exercise of Respectable Woman

c. Why does Mrs. Baroda not disclose her feelings towards Gouvernail to her husband?

➽ Mrs. Baroda does not disclose her feelings towards Gouvernail to her husband because she believes she is a respectable woman who is boarded between society's norms and perceptions. She was afraid of her image in society doing any inappropriate and unacceptable behavior being a married woman.


d. The last three sentences of the story bring a kind of twist. After reading these three sentences, how do you analyze Mrs. Baroda’s attitude towards Gouvernail? 

➽ The last three statements of the story bring a kind of twist. After reading these three sentences, I feel that Mrs. Baroda has overcome all her emotional feelings towards Gouvernail and has developed a positive attitude towards Gouvernail.

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