Pefection Can Kill
Pefection Can Kill
Perfection Can Kill
As the world progresses technologically and as things change from decade to decade, the importance or longing for perfection increases. Beauty and the physical aspect of people have become so significant that people loose touch with what’s important in life. Women see photographs of models in magazines and watch the celebrities prance down a red carpet with all of their seeming perfection and they begin to compare themselves to that and strive to look as perfect as the celebrities. Men behave similarly and they too strive for perfection in their life. The short story, “The Birthmark” by Nathaniel Hawthorne displays a husband searching for perfection in Georgiana, who is his wife. She has a birthmark on her cheek and her husband, Aylmer suddenly becomes disgusted with it. He attempts to create a liquid that will rid her of her birthmark and little did he know that this procedure would kill her. As the story progresses Aylmer goes from being obsessed with physical perfection in his wife to realizing that beauty is only skin deep and her looks were not what he fell in love with. Perfection is unattainable in any case and people lose themselves, their soul, and what really matters in life when trying to achieve perfection.

The protagonist of this story would be the wife Georgiana. Georgiana is a lovely woman as described in the story and her husband never thinks about her birthmark until after they marry. He becomes obsessed with the idea of producing a substance that will make his wife perfect. “No, dearest Georgiana, you came so nearly perfect from the hand of Nature that this slightest possible defect, which we hesitate whether to term an effect of a beauty, shocks me, as being the visible mark of earthly imperfection.” (329) The antagonist would be Aylmer and his need of perfection because Georgiana felt conquered by her husband to be perfect and she would do anything to give him perfection, even if that meant death.

Hawthorne uses an omniscient narrator in this short story. He does not speak as a character in the story but he reports their feelings and goes back and forth to different characters. If any of the three main

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Short Story And Nathaniel Hawthorne. (April 2, 2021). Retrieved from