Questions tagged [character-analysis]

Questions relating to the analysis of characters in works of literature: for example, their traits, construction, or other aspects. This tag should be used together with any relevant work, series, or author tags.

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Is Hamlet a misogynist?

Hamlet seems to have issues with the women in his life. Shakespeare's play Hamlet contains only two female characters, Gertrude and Ophelia. And arguably both are treated unkindly by the Danish prince....
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Why did Halle have butter all over his face

In Toni Morrison's novel Beloved, Sethe's husband Halle never came back to Baby Suggs' house after planning to run away from Sweet Home. After Paul D arrives, he later blurts out to Sethe of what he ...
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Why is Macbeth's “vaulting ambition” so important and famous?

What does 'vaulting' mean here? Macbeth uses the term in Act I, scene 7: I have no spur To prick the sides of my intent, but only Vaulting ambition, which o'erleaps itself And falls on the other. ...
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Why is Snape so fond of Malfoy?

In the end of Harry Potter, we learn that This however, does not account for why Snape shows favoritism to Draco before the Dark Lord resurrects (after which it is relatively obvious why). I am ...
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Is Troy the antagonist in “Fences”?

Is Troy the antagonist of the play Fences? The antagonist is, by definition, the opposer to the protagonist, who is also Troy. However, Troy often acts against his own beliefs (i.e., sending Gabe to ...
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What is the change in the characterization of the explorers in arctic novels in the past two centuries?

Has the general image of explorers or exploring teams in Arctic novels in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries really changed in essence?
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In the Brothers Karamazov, did Dostoyevsky take those characters out of real life?

In the novel The Brothers Karamazov, did the writer take those characters out of real life? Or did he just build the characters with time?
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Homer’s characterization of Penelope

Is Penelope in Homer's Odyssey a strong or weak character? What does her character reveal about Homer’s characterization of women in general?
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Why wasn't O'Brien considered a thought criminal?

Given that O'Brien shows a high level of awareness of the Party's deceptiveness and malice (e.g. the fact that he admitted to being involved in creating and promoting the Goldstein myth), to what ...
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Was Lenny Small actually not a fundamentally good person?

It is easy to see Lenny as an innocent who had simple longings, an unfortunate due to his disability but fundamentally a sympathetic character; however, it seems to me that while most of his violence ...
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What was Faust's purpose?

It seems like at the end of Goethe's Faust II, he has realized what he should do. Shortly before that, he kills humans on his quest to help humanity. So what exactly is his new purpose, except that he ...
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Does David Housewright borrow from Michael Connelly's character Harry Bosch to develop his character Rushmore McKenzie for the McKenzie novels?

First I read Michael Connelly's books featuring Harry Bosch. Now I'm reading David Housewright's books featuring McKenzie. At times, I nearly get the two characters confused because of their ...
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In The Great Gatsby, is Nick Carraway's name intentional?

Nick's surname sounds a lot like care-away, and I've seen a number of online sources that state that this Fitzgerald intended for this to be so. I find this hard to believe, considering that Nick isn'...
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Is John Milton's Lucifer a tragic hero?

Loosely related: Was Paradise Lost the first major work of literature to give "sympathy for the devil"? In Paradise Lost, Lucifer/Satan appears to have at least some heroic characteristics, ...
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Why is the not-so-wicked Which called Faintly Macabre?

In Norton Juster's witty wacky fantasy The Phantom Tollbooth, during their stay in the Dictionopolis dungeon Milo and Tock meet a witch Which. She used to be in charge of selecting which words to use, ...
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What makes Elizabeth Bennet “life-like” in “Pride and Prejudice”?

This is an essay prompt from my literature class: "The women in Jane Austen's novels are more life-like than men". How far is this comment applicable to Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice? What ...
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How is Daisy Buchanan from “The Great Gatsby” a controversial character?

I have to gather a list of some controversial characters in English Literature. As a result, I came up with a small list. A few characters were suggested by my friends, but one I found a bit confusing....
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399 views

Why does Sammy feel sorry in Updike's “A&P”?

In John Updike's short story A&P, the narrator Sammy has been ogling a group of customers at the A&P store: In walks these three girls in nothing but bathing suits. I'm in the third check-...
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Rhett Butler's character archetype?

My question is about Gone with the Wind and is actually more about cinema than literature (I haven't read the book), but I think it might also be pertinent here. How would you call Rhett Butler's ...
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Freudian/psychoanalytical interpretation of the triangular relationship in Toradora!

The central theme in the Japanese light novel/manga Toradora! (とらドラ!) around which the entire story unfolds is the love triangle between the male protagonist Takasu Ryuji and his two girl friends, ...
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Who are the main characters of “A Study in Emerald”?

Neil Gaiman calls his "A Study in Emerald"* a Lovecraft/Sherlock Holmes fanfiction. And indeed it is exactly that: it uses the narration and story structure pretty characteristic to one from ...
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How old was Tatiana during the main events of “Eugene Onegin”?

Eugene Onegin is a novel in verse, by the great Russian poet Alexander Pushkin. The main characters are Eugene Onegin, a young and bored man, and Tatiana, an even younger girl who falls in love with ...
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In Ulysses, why does Stephen finally decide not to stay with Bloom?

Ulysses is such a well-commented book that it's hard to find questions which have not been widely explored already. However, there's a simple aspect of character motivation I've been unable to clarify....
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Why are Drizzt's eyes purple?

In R. A. Salvatore's books The Legend of Drizzt series, the main character Drizzt Do'Urden is a Drow, a species in Forgotten Realms that live underground and far cousins to elves. Drow have ...
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Who does Mollie represent in Animal Farm?

It's well known that various characters represent real Soviet figures. Who does Mollie, the horse sympathetic to the humans, represent? Is she just a generic non-Soviet sympathizer or does she ...
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Did James Bond ever experience doubts about having to end people's lives in Fleming's novels?

Did James Bond ever experience doubts about having to end people's lives in Fleming's novels? I'm talking about doubts in general, existential, level, regarding the fact that he had to end lots of ...
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Did Sherlock Holmes have a character development arc across Arthur Conan Doyle's books?

Often, in a large novel, a character would have a character development arc, which is considered an integral part of writing. But Sherlock Holmes canon consists mostly of smaller stories. Was there ...
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Does “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” present Coriolanus Snow as a narcissist?

Throughout the book, Snow is seen repeatedly trying to manipulate other characters, such as him appearing to fake friendship with Sejanus Plinth (and his unsuccessful attempt to manipulate Plinth for ...
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Does Othello have impostor syndrome, or any other problem because his background is different?

Is there any implication in Shakespeare's text that Othello had impostor syndrome, or any feeling of inadequacy (in love, or another aspect of interpersonal relationships) because his background is ...
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Is Harry Potter a coming of age story?

When talking about the coming of age genre a friend of mine mentioned Harry Potter as an example. I found myself incapable of sharing this idea since not only I do not think that the core of the plot ...
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How is Enoch's story relevant to the rest of Wise Blood?

I understand Enoch's character arc somewhat, some vague notion of missing human connection and having a more animal nature, and the parallel between putting on the gorilla costume and the Biblical ...
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How powerful is Willems in the beginning of An Outcast of the Islands?

I'm first time reading a novel by Joseph Conrad; I was inspired and revered him since I saw Apocalypse Now. But as Mr.Joseph is regarded as a very skillful, detailful and prolific writer so I must ...
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What did Miss Bentley see in “A Month By The Lake” by H. E. Bates?

In H. E. Bates' novella "A Month By The Lake", Miss Bentley and Miss Beaumont have to get changed in the same hut to go swimming (because most huts are occupied). Miss Bentley emerges ...
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Was Snow still following his morality in the Hunger Games series?

Related: Why does Tigris call Coriolanus Snow a "good person"? The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes contains the following: Coriolanus felt disconnected from their "romantic notions"...
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What attracted Howard Roark to Dominique in The Fountainhead?

I can understand why Dominique was ultimately attracted to him. He really was the "Superman" she wanted, although it took her almost the whole novel to realize it. But Dominique disdained Roark for ...
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Why are only some characters in Petrushevskaya's Hygiene given names?

HYGIENE, By Ludmilla Petrushevskaya, in There Once Lived a Woman Who Tried to Kill Her Neighbor’s Baby: Scary Fairy Tales, published this fall by Penguin. Translated from the Russian by Keith Gessen ...
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At what point did Leontes become jealous?

The Winter's Tale, one of Shakespeare's last plays, depicts the character of Leontes, King of Sicily, as someone who suddenly becomes jealous. Scholars and readers have often criticised the play ...
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What is the exact social status of Alexei Vronsky?

Alexei Vronsky is first mentioned by Stepan Oblonsky, in Part One chapter XI. This is how he is presented there by Stiva (Pevear translation): Vronsky is one of the sons of Count Kirill Ivanovich ...
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What does Mr World represent in the American Gods book?

The American Gods Wikia site claims that Mr World is a personification of globalisation. That definitely seems to be true in the TV series (see the creepiest rant ever made about salsa), but in the ...
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In “A Midsummer Night's Dream”, do opposites attract?

In Shakespeare's play A Midsummer Night's Dream, do opposites attract? or do similars attract? What evidence is there either way? I thought about how the characters are opposites in many ways, ...
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Why did Michael Corleone remove Tom Hagen from the family business?

Near the end of the novel The Godfather, Michael Corleone takes his vengeance on the other families, as well as those who betrayed him. Before this, though, he cleans house, setting up a secret regime ...
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How did the daemon appointed by Xanth get his position?

I know from reading the Xanth novels that the demon Xanth put another demon in charge of providing the humans with their specific talents (magic abilities that they can use at will). Now my question ...
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What is the purpose of Owl Eyes in Great Gatsby?

Scott Fitzgerald rarely puts characters or events that have do not either have an underlying message or support in the character development of the lead characters. Therefore I was confused as to what ...
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To what degree is Charles Darnay’s decision to go to Paris at the end of Book the Second a noble or virtuous decision?

I am having trouble with this question from "A Tale of Two Cities." Just wondering if someone could help with this. If anyone could bring up quotes as well, that would be great!
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Why did the Witches give the prophecy in the first place?

The 3 Witches prophecied to Macbeth that he would be king, thus setting the play into motion. Why did they do that? Did they realize that they were basically giving a self-fulfilling prophecy, and ...
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What is the significance of Sauron never having a physical presence in the Lord of the Rings?

So I noticed that in Lord of the Rings Sauron acts as a very interesting villain. He never makes a corporeal appearance, nor does he have any acting dialogue. He's mentioned plenty of times through ...
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Is Snoopy a telepath?

So throughout the comic strip Peanuts by Charles Schulz, Snoopy has been seen doing a fair number of ... shall we say unusual activities. These range from being a WWI Flying Ace, to his obsession with ...
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Why does Carton feel so bad about himself?

Carton throughout A Tale of Two Cities is shown as a man who hates who he is, and wishes he could be someone different but cannot. I think one of the best quotes to represent this is in "Fellow of No ...
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What does Narcissa Malfoy's name say about her character?

Many of the names in the Harry Potter series are chosen so as to reflect some trait of their character. For example: Sirius Black the black dog, Remus Lupin the wolf, Severus the severe teacher, Luna ...
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Was Frederick Lawley based on a real figure in British India?

The fictional character of Frederick Lawley, a prominent British figure in colonial India, is the main object of R. K. Narayan's "Lawley Road" (a short story first published in 1956 in the eponymous ...