Kate Chopin & the ‘Cadian Ball

“Alcée reached the ball very late, of course—too late for the chicken gumbo which had been served at midnight.” ‘Cadian Ball, Kate Chopin, 1892



‘Cadian Ball by Kate Chopin  is so packed with information it takes a few readings to pick up on all the characters, their importance and all the events that take place before “le bal est fini” – the ball is finished.

If you haven’t read Chopin’s short story, you can find it here, and by all means – READ IT! And, as far as I’m concerned, read all her works.

Calixta and Clarisse, Bobinot and Alcee – I love the dynamics of these four characters.

But, in the background is this ball – the Acadian Ball, where the short story draws its name. I want to go to a party like this!

All night music and dancing and lemonade and chicken gumbo and card games and a room just for the babies to sleep (le parc aux petits) – sounds like a good time to me!

I admire the way Chopin works her settings into the stories and it becomes almost another character.

And, I’d like a bowl of gumbo, please!

If you’re a writer, how do you use setting in your stories?

As a reader, what settings in stories have been your favorite?

photo credit: Southernpixel Alby via photopin cc

About melindamcguirewrites

The young man or woman writing today has forgotten the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself which alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about, worth the agony and the sweat. ------ William Faulkner, Nobel Prize Speech, Stockholm, 1950
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4 Responses to Kate Chopin & the ‘Cadian Ball

  1. Barbara says:

    The garden from Tom’s midnight garden and Narnia from the lion the witch and the wardrobe! I like Tom’s garden in winter time when the writer describes the frozen river and the snow, and of course, there’s a lot of snow in Narnia!

  2. Pingback: Southern Rain | melindamcguirewrites

  3. DM says:

    I don’t think I have a favorite setting! I’ve never thought of this before. I too love Narnia. I’ll have to come back and read this story.

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