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Essay/Term paper: The lady with the pet dog

Essay, term paper, research paper:  Book Reports

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In reading the short story The Lady With The Pet Dog by

Anton Chekhov and A Respectable Woman by Kate

Chopin one can see key similarities of the two works. The

short story by Anton Checkov deals with a man and a

woman who are both married but regardless of this fact they

fall in love with each other and have a secret affair. The short

story by Kate Chopin deals with a married woman who is

tempted to have an affair with one of her husbands friends,

but she resist unlike the characters in The Lady With The

Pet Dog. Both of the works deal with the fact that each of

the characters are involved in committed relationships, but

they are tempted to cheat in their relationships. The

characters in the short story The Lady With The Pet Dog fall

in love with each other and have an affair regardless of the

fact that both of the individuals are married. A lady arrives in

town with a little white dog, which would give her her name

initially since no one knew of her true identity. "She walked

along, always wearing the same beret and always with the

white dog no one knew who she was and everyone called

her simply "the lady with the pet dog""(194). The man that

has an acute interest in this young woman is named Dmitrich

Gurov who is married with a daughter twelve years old, and

two sons away at school. He is dissatisfied to say the least

with his present situation and his marriage to his wife.

"…while he privately considered her of limited intelligence,

narrow-minded, dowdy, was afraid of her, and did not like

to be at home"(294). This man would often cheat on his wife

because he is unhappy and thought very little of his wife. "He

had begun being unfai! thful to her long ago—had been

unfaithful to her often and, probably for that reason, almost

always spoke ill of women, and when they were talked of in

his presence used to call them "the inferior race""(194).

When this man seen a new woman in his town he decides to

introduce himself and find out about the lady with the pet

dog. As the two of them become closer and closer the

relationship becomes more serious. They often walked in the

park together which made their friendship grow stronger

each day. "…afterwards he meet her in the square several

times a day"(193). After many acquaintances and talks he

learns that this woman grew up in Petersburg and married

two years previously. "In the evening when the wind had

abated they went out on the pier to watch the steamer come

in"(195). He soon learns that her name is Anna Sergeyevna.

Also she will be staying in Yalta for about a month and she is

there to take a well needed rest away from her husband, as

he is in need of one too. He begins to make passes at her

that she didn"t notice at first such as offering to buy her a

soft drink or some ice cream. "…Gurov often went into the

restaurant and offered Anna Sergeyvna a soft drink or ice

cream"(195). As they grow closer they finally go far beyond

the limits of a friendship. "Then he looked at her intently, and

suddenly embraced her and kissed her on the lips, and the

moist fragrance of her flowers enveloped him at once he

looked round him anxiously, wondering if anyone had seen

them"(196). This sudden move was truly unexpected from

the both of them and Gurov was afraid that someone would

see them together for he is married as she is too and this is

not tolerated in marriage. He is truly crossing the line and

realizes that it is dangerous to be with Anna in public,

because someone could see them. Anna felt tremendously

guilty after this kiss from another man besides her husband.

""It"s not right," she said. "You don"t respect me now, you

first of! all…."God forgive me," she said, and her eyes filled

with tears. "It"s terrible""(196). Although she felt horrible she

felt just in her actions because of the way that her husband

has treated her. Events like these continue on for weeks, up

until the day it is time for Anna to go back home to her

husband. "…a letter came from him saying that he had eye-

trouble, and begging his wife to return home as soon as

possible. Anna Sergeyevna made haste to go"(198). She is

truly not ready to leave the companion that she has met and

fell madly in love with in her short stay in Yalta. ""It"s a good

thing I"m leaving", she said to Gurov. "It"s the hand of

Fate""(198)! As much as she hates to leave her newly

acquired friend she knows it"s best for the both of them.

They are both married and this type of behavior can"t be

tolerated. "We are parting forever—it has to be, for we

ought never have met"(198). She was going out of his life

forever he thought, all he has left are sweet memories of his

young loving companion. "And his memories glowed more

and more vividly"(199). It seems as though he can"t get

Anna off of his mind even though she has been away for

several months no! w. "When he shut his eyes he saw her

before him as though she were there in the flesh, and she

seemed to him lovelier, younger, tenderer than she had

been…"(198). He can no longer be without her and he

decides to go and find the woman that he misses and loves

so much. He is terribly unhappy when she leaves and he

continues to be unhappy with his family and wife. "He was

fed up with his children…In December during the holidays

he prepared to take a trip. He wanted to see Anna

Sergeyevna and talk with her, to arrange a rendezvous if

possible"(200). He finally meets with her at an orchestra, but

she is with her husband so he has to secretly meet with her.

During intermission her husband leaves the theater, and

Gurov makes his move to go and talk to her. Anna was truly

shocked to see Dmitrich and was frightened that he has

shown up while her husband is around. "She glanced at him

and turned pale, then looked at him again in horror, unable

to believe her eyes, and gripped the fan and the lorgnette

tightly in her hands, evidently trying to keep herself from

fainting"(202). She agrees to visit him in Moscow, but he

must leave her at once before her husband returns and sees

the two of them together and becomes suspicious of this

stranger that is talking to his wife. "I will come see you in

Moscow"(202). After the meeting in Moscow both of them

agree to visit each other regularly. The love and friendship

they share those short few weeks is a bond that couldn"t be

broken. "And Anna Sergeyevna began coming to see him in

Moscow"(202). The character in the short story A

Respectable Woman is a housewife that is happily married

unlike the man and woman in The Lady With The Pet Dog.

This woman is pleased with her husband and home

environment and has no intentions of cheating on her

husband. Her husband invites one of his college friends that

he has told his wife so much about to visit for a few weeks.

He is a very busy man and needs a rest away from his work

so he can relax and enjoy himself. From the stories that her

husband has told her she formed a picture of him in her head

and from this visualization she dislikes this man. "But she had

unconsciously formed an image of him in her mind"(205).

Although when the man actually comes to visit she takes a

liking to him and realizes what she thought before not to be

true of this man at all. "And she rather liked him when he

first presented himself"(205). What her husband has told her

didn"t match up with this man that appears before her when

he arrives. After the man arrives she truly is surprised at

what the man is actually like. The man is not as much trouble

as she expects and she begins to take a liking to this college

friend of her husbands. "Gouvernail"s personality puzzled

Mrs. Baroda, but she liked him"(206). She didn"t know

what to think of this man who didn"t speak much and makes

no direct contact with her except the occasional hello or

good evening. Mrs. Baroda has mixed feelings about this

man who had come to visit her husband. "She had never

known her thoughts or intentions to be so confused"(206).

One night while sitting outside on a bench Governail comes

and sits down with her for a talk and to deliver a white scarf

her husband has sent. While the two of them sit down for a

talk she fells strongly attracted to this man. It seems as if she

wants to reach out and touch him, and have him hold her

closely in his arms. The strong impulse seems to overwhelm

her but she resist. "The stronger the impulse grew to bring

herself near him, the further, in fact, did she draw away from

him. But she did not yield to temptation"(207). When the

time is right she rises and leaves Governail outside on the

bench by himself. She fells that she needs to get away from

him, and stay somewhere else until he leaves her home. To

get away from this temptation she leaves and goes to her

Aunt Octavies until her husbands visitor would be gone and

she would not have this awful temptation to be with this man.

When the two men awaken the next morning she is already

gone to her Aunt"s house. S! he has escaped this terrible

temptation that overwhelmed her that night on the bench

outside and wouldn"t have to worry about it again. In

conclusion the similarities of theses two stories is

remarkable. Both of the works deal with committed people

in relationships that are tempted to be with someone other

than their spouse. In one of the story"s the spouse resist the

temptation and in the other the temptation is far too great

and can"t be resisted. Although in both of the works the

temptation to cheat is present and greatly considered.  

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