Hugo began writing Les Miserables twenty years before its eventual publication in His goals in writing the novel were as lofty as the reputation it has subsequently acquired; Les Miserables is primarily a great humanitarian work that encourages compassion and hope in the face of adversity and injustice.
It is also, however, a historical novel of great scope and analysis, and it provides a detailed vision of nineteenth-century French politics and society.
Driven by his commitment to reform and progress, Hugo wrote Les Miserables with nothing less than a literary and political revolution in mind. Each of the three major characters in the novel symbolizes one of these predicaments: Jean Valjean represents the degradation of man in the proletariat, Fantine represents the subjection of women through hunger, and Cosette represents the atrophy of the child by darkness.
Accessed September 14, Leave your email and we will send you an example after 24 hours If you contact us after hours, we'll get back to you in 24 hours or less. How to cite this page Choose cite format: Explaining why Napoleon Bonaparte. How about make it original? He puts everything into her happiness. She symbolizes all he has. When she falls in love with Marius and leaves him, he has nothing. She spends a portion of the book with her mother, Fantine, who could not take care of her.
When Jean Valjean takes her in, Cosette reveals a side of Jean Valjean that has not yet been exposed- his loving side. Jean Valjean loves Cosette and supports and protects her. Cosette is used in many ways throughout the novel and by many different characters. Although she never becomes a well-rounded character, she plays an important role in the development of the other characters. Cosette touches each character she comes in contact with and each in a distinct way.
Home Papers Les Miserables Essay. This is just a sample. To get a unique essay Hire Writer. A limited time offer! Get custom essay sample written according to your requirements Urgent 3h delivery guaranteed Order Now. How to Write a Critical Analysis. Marius attempts to prevent Cosette from seeing the man who loved her like a daughter, and this throws Valjean into a deep depression.
Marius later learns from the Thenardiers that it was Valjean who saved him and he sets out to correct his wrongdoing. He discloses everything to Cosette and the pair rush off to see Valjean just before he takes his final breath.
Happy to have his daughter by his side once more, Valjean passes away with a full heart. Jean Valjean is the pseudo-father figure to Cosette. Valjean received a nineteen year prison sentence for stealing a load of bread.
After experiencing the kindness of a bishop, Valjean renounces his life of crime and vows to lead a prosperous life. He develops a manufacturing process that nets him a comfortable lifestyle. He finds love he never thought possible in Cosette, the illegitimate daughter of a prostitute, and devotes his life to helping those in dire straits. Over the years, Valjean adopts many different personas in order to evade the police.
He spends his entire life looking for forgiveness for his wrongdoings and searching for redemption. Upon his death bed, he finally makes peace with his past. Cosette is the illegitimate daughter of Fantine. Upon the death of her mother, she is adopted by Valjean. Throughout her childhood, Cosette was raised to be the servant of the Thenardier family in Montfermeil. However, despite her tumultuous upbringing, she maintains a positive outlook and always sees the best in people.
While living with Valjean and a group of nuns in Petit-Picpus, Cosette receives an excellent education and grows into a caring and well-rounded young woman. She later finds true love in Marius, the grandson of a wealthy businessman. Javert is the local police inspector. He has a firm belief in law and the pursuit of justice and has committed his life to upholding the strict penal codes of France. In the beginning, it appears that Javert is incapable of showing compassion or taking pity on those less fortunate than himself.
He carries out his work with extreme precision, and hunts for lawbreakers in the way that a beast would hunt its prey. Javert has a keen desire to capture Valjean and bring him to justice. Ultimately, Javert battles with his inner self when trying to decide if Valjean truly deserves to be punished. In the end, it is this personal struggle that forces him to undermine the very belief in the system that he has based his entire life on.
Fantine is a typical small town girl. She leaves her home in search of a brighter future in the city. Whilst there, she falls in love and has an affair with a young man who abandons her after learning that she is with child. Despite being sickly, Fantine makes every effort possible to support herself and her daughter, Cosette. Even as her life begins to fall to shambles, and she turns to prostitution in order to make ends meet, she never stops loving her child.
Fantine is symbolic of the nineteenth century destruction of the less fortunate. Marius was raised in the home of his grandfather, Gillenormand. However, upon learning the true reason for having been kept from his father, Marius leaves on a journey to discover himself. Marius is not yet wise to the ways of the world, but desires change. Having bonded with a group of radicals, Marius fights on the barricades and eventually marries the love of his life — Cosette.
Myriel is the bishop of the town of Digne. His love for his fellow men has made him quite popular. The bishop shows kindness and compassion to Valjean and inspires him to live a life of gratitude, seeking out ways to help those less fortunate.
The sire Thernardier is an awful, greedy man who, under false pretences, agrees to care for Cosette. Thenardier is driven by greed and will extort anyone he can. He is capable of anything, including murder. Equally as horrible as her husband, she finds joy in torturing Cosette. Later in the novel, she plays an eager role in helping her husband to plan to rob Valjean and Cosette.
The eldest Thenardier daughter. Eponine is a product of her upbringing and sees no harm in helping her parents destroy the lives of those around them.
She is later redeemed by her pure love for Marius. As she lays dying, she is revealed as one of the most heroic characters in the novel. Gillenormand keeps Marius away from his father, George, because he worries that he will corrupt Marius with his political views.
Gillenormand is a strict monarchist and is opposed to the French Revolution. Despite his views, Gillenormand truly loves Marius and wants nothing more than for his grandson to be happy. He was kicked out of his family home at an early age and shows bravery well beyond his years.
It is here when he first realized his inability to keep his promise to live the life of an honest man — he begins to recognize how immoral he is.
- Les Miserables by Victor Hugo Les Misèrables was written by Victor Hugo, and published in It has been translated into many different languages, and turned into a play and movie as when as being a .
Set in 19th century France, it tells the story of Jean Valjean, an ex-convict, who is able to rebuild his life. Author Kathryn M. Grossman concludes, "Les Miserables is a work to which one can return time and time again without a sense of having exhausted the possibilities.
To what extent does the description of Myriel’s background at the beginning of Les Misérables introduce us to the central themes of the novel? The novel begins with a brief biography of Myriel. We learn that he was forced into exile during the French Revolution and rose quickly to become the bishop of Digne upon his return to France. The literal meaning of les miserables is "the miserable ones." The characters are french and the book is centered around their lives. The time period is the early 's.
Les Misérables - Essay Victor Hugo. Homework Help Les Miserables is a novel of great enough length that there are several different plot lines happening throughout the story following. Les Miserables essays are academic essays for citation. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of Les Miserables by Victor Hugo.