Saturday, February 2, 2008

"At The Cadian Ball"

“At The ‘Cadian Ball” by Kate Chopin took place in Lousiana in the late 19th century. Clarisse and Alcee are the main characters and live on a farm together with their servant Bruce. Clarisse wants to marry Alcee but he has not mentioned anything of the sort to her. Clarisse decides to try and make Alcee jealous; however this backfires when Alcee storms into the room and makes a scene in front of all her friends. Later a storm hits the farm with no warning and a voracious cyclone takes out eight acres of Alcee’s crops. This is a huge blow to Alcee finances and he is enraged. Alcee explains that as a man, he can go toe to toe with any other man, however, when God and a woman join forces against him as they have, he simply can’t take it. Alcee starts to drink and decides to go to the ‘Cadian Ball where he will look for a woman. Clarisse sees him leaves and though Bruce tries to prevaricate the truth, Clarisse forces him to tell her where Alcee has gone. Clarisse loves Alcee and doesn’t want him to be with another woman so she follows him to the ball. There are many people at the ball including Bobinot and Calixta. Bobinot loves Calixta so much that the thought of her simply drives him crazy. When Alcee arrives at the ball he zeroes in on Calixta because she is so undeniably beautiful. As they lie in the dark, Alcee kissing Calixta neck, Clarisse storms in and explains that something has happened at the house and Alcee needs to come home. Alcee obliges and starts home with Clarisse. Meanwhile as Bobinot takes Calixta home she agrees, in a very awkward, temperate tone to marry Bobinot. She does refuse though to even kiss him that night. Also as Clarisse and Alcee head home Clarisse admits that nothing is wrong at home and she simply could not stand the though of Alcee being gone for a long period of time with another woman. As they confess their love for one another, the play ends.
I didn’t particularly enjoy this play because there was not much to read into or figure out. It was very straight forward and obviously a piece of a larger work. The characters were interesting, however, and I believe that if the story becomes more interesting as it goes on that my opinion could change.