Sentimental Education

by: Gustave Flaubert

Suggested Essay Topics

Writing help Suggested Essay Topics

Describe the parallels between the political events surrounding France’s Second Empire and Part Three of Sentimental Education.

Choose one character and trace his or her search for love throughout the novel. Who or what does he or she desire? How does he or she go about pursuing this desire?

Compare and contrast Rosanette and Madame Arnoux. Why do you think Frédéric is drawn to both women?

Explain the relationship between Frédéric and Deslauriers and how it differs from Frédéric’s relationships with women (apart from the sexual element).

In what ways are Frédéric and Arnoux alike? Different? How does Arnoux’s fall connect to Frédéric’s fate?

Many chapters in Sentimental Education end with one character being separated from another. Explain the role of these goodbyes in the novel.