'Angels' and `Fillies' in Le Père Goriot

In Le Père Goriot women are often compared to "anges" or "chevaux." An examination of these two terms in the context of the novel reveals that they are demeaning both to the women so described and to the speakers who use them, mainly Goriot and Rastignac. The networks of images associated with the two conceptions of women function dialectically, enabling the reader to understand how the misplaced romanticism of Goriot comes to be replaced with the fledgling dandyism of Rastignac and why Balzac condemns both of these approaches. (PWW)

Willis, Pauline Wahl.
Volume 1983-1984 Fall-Winter; 12(1-2): 78-85.