Charles’s classmates narrate as a first-person plural “we” in the first chapter. It’s not clear whether one person or the whole class is talking. For the rest of the literary work, an omniscient third-person narrator unrolls the story. In spite of the fact, the narrator is quite objective, he often makes his point of view felt, especially regarding the ridiculous attempts of his characters to appear sophisticated.
The first chapter is narrated from the perspective of one or all of Charles Bovary’s schoolmates. We’re given a good opportunity to see the world via Charles’s eyes before being introduced to Emma. The bulk of the work recounts events as she faces them, although always in the third person and sometimes providing us with a brief glimpse into somebody’s mind. Notwithstanding the fact that the narrator limits most of his attention solely to Emma, there’s a fairly even mix of objective observations of her behavior as well as subjective accounts of her feelings and thoughts. Flaubert also uses the narrative integration of thoughts, free indirect discourse and feelings without quotation marks or attribution to demonstrate what his characters are thinking. By the way, after Emma’s death, the narration is objective enough.
Flaubert’s attitude toward his story as well as his heroine is divided between ironic contempt and sympathy. We already aware of the fact that he identified with his heroine. It’s because once he told that he appears to be Madame Bovary. His sympathy for her is apparent in the way he illustrates her passions as well as the circumstances conspiring against her. He certainly knows how ridiculous attempts at sophistication by members of the bourgeoisie can be. He also portrays many of his characters as grotesque, foolish and ridiculous.
Emma wishes for wealth, romantic love as well as social status, which she’s unable to attain as she’s married to a middle-class doctor.
Emma starts borrowing money for the purpose of paying for gifts for her first lover, Rodolphe. The, when he leaves her, Emma becomes sick and her husband, Charles, borrows more money to pay for her care. Currently she has to borrow more and more in order to pay off her debts and also indulge her extravagant and sophisticated tastes. Emma manages to take a second lover, named Leon, though soon he gets tired of her. Lheureux, Emma’s primary creditor, insists that she needs to pay him back and get a court order in order to seize all her property.
Charles’s classmates narrate as a first-person plural “we” in the first chapter. It’s not clear whether one person or the whole class is talking. For the rest of the literary work, an omniscient third-person narrator unrolls the story.