He even denied offer of his daughter to save him: “I am charmed with Beauty's kind and generous offer, but I cannot yield to it. I am old, and have not long to live, so can only loose a few years, which I regret for your sakes alone, my dear children." It proves he was not selfish or reckless but warm-hearted because he worried about his children and refused to sacrifice them.
Gambler in “The Tiger´s Bride, “also did not want to lose his daughter. This girl explained it to us: “I saw wild hope light up his eyes” and “I know he thought he could not lose me.” He wanted to gain fortune for her daughter and didn´t realize the great risk he faced to. He was only too naďve that he thought he could ensure daughter´s future so quickly by gambling. His daughter described it: “back with me would come all he had lost, the unravelled fortunes of our family at one blow restored.”
The purpose of this trade is also different for Milord and Beast. Milord wanted that girl to see young pretty virgin naked. He did not yearn for her soul but for her body. He hired her to strip off for him. This type of contract can be called as lease or short-term working agreement.
Conversely, Beast wanted Beauty to love him. He did not force her to do something for him. He buys her not to be alone. It is some kind of contract of purchase.
We should focus on what these fathers gained and lost by this business. The price can be unequalled. It is usually a thing that is rare and valuable for others. Loss or profit is also subjective and depends on what is most important for a certain person.
The merchant obtained roses which were rare in this region but he lost his youngest daughter. All in all; the price he got for the life of their daughters was too low.
On the other hand, the gambler had a pleasure to play a game with Milord and almost won all the property of Milord. But he lost everything he owned – money, “black earth (in Russia), blue forest with bear and wild boar, serf, cornfields, farmyards, and horses” and his only child too.
So there are three kinds of goods which are exchanged – property, flowers and a human being. When we compare these commodities we notice each of them characterize different type of personality, motives, attitudes and values of buyers and sellers.
Merchant and the Beast in “Beauty and the Beast” preferred roses which symbolize love and beauty. This flower is also romantic and idealistic. It is usually a gift for a woman you love and has a spiritual value. Therefore the characters are not materialistic and care for a human being.
In comparison, Gambler and Milord from story “The Tiger´s Bride” are fond of property. Through money they show their influence, power and satisfy their passion for gambling and winning. They are not really interested in true love. So they only use other people for their pleasure.
The same motive of roses repeats in both stories. In “Beauty and the Beast” are objects of love and beauty, whereas in “The Tiger´s Bride” they symbolized forgiveness when daughter gave a rose to his father: “father wants a rose to show that I forgive him.” Roses were also given by Milord to this daughter but she thought about them “as if a gift of flowers would reconcile a woman to any humiliation.” So she also considered them as kind of apology from Milord.
Another significant issue was that there was no effective protection for these ladies from family or authorities. Everybody was threatened with tremendous power of Beasts. The reason for this fear is mentioned by Beauty in “The Tiger´s Bride” – “if you have enough money, anything is possible.” It means money can influence almost everything. In “Beauty and the Beast” merchant also warned his sons not to try to save his daughter because „Beast's power is so great, that I have no hopes of your overcoming him.” So it is obvious, nobody could help to these poor girls.
The great difference is between daughters how they felt that were sold as merchandise. One of them (“Beauty and the Beast”) agrees to be sold and does not feel any wrong. She did it for her father. She loves him so much, she even offered him her life to save him: “I will deliver myself up to all his fury, and I am very happy in thinking that my death will save my father's life, and be a proof of my tender love for him." This honourable act shows close relations between this youngest daughter and her father.
The other lady (“The Tiger´s Bride”) is really sad that she was lost at cards. She feels abused by her father and Milord. She is really disappointed that father abandoned her. She asked herself: “Could he so easily leave me here?“ This unpleasant experience changed her life.
To conclude, I present all parties of this trade and show their main interest. I also present the basic symbols which relates to the economist aspects. Moreover, I tried to compare the price and its equivalent. The main thesis makes it evident that it does not matter if something is moral or legal. Money changes the world.
- For Teachers