Questions tagged [character-analysis]

For questions about how characters act or are constructed by authors.

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26
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2answers
2k views

Is Sherlock Holmes religious?

In this question, it is established that Sherlock Holmes, from the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was asexual and in explaining that it is stated that he showed very little emotion in general. This ...
25
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1answer
8k views

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 ...
25
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1answer
13k views

Is there any textual evidence to support that Dumbledore was gay?

JK Rowling announced in 2007 to an audience at Carnegie Hall that Albus Dumbledore was in fact, gay and always had been... Q: Did Dumbledore, who believed in the prevailing power of love, ever ...
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236 views

Is the treatment of Jar Jar Binks in Aftermath: Empire's End a reflection of audience treatment?

In one of the Interlude scenes in the book Star Wars Aftermath: Empire's End, a child interacts with Jar Jar Binks, and gives more details about how the adults don't like him due to their beliefs that ...
18
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490 views

Are Frog and Toad more than just friends?

In a 1977 interview with The Lion and the Unicorn, Arnold Lobel said: You know, if an adult has an unhappy love affair, he writes about it. He exorcises it out of himself, perhaps, by writing a ...
16
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1answer
528 views

Is there a name for a comic relief character that temporarily becomes highly capable?

This is a trope that I've seen sometimes in comic books. I haven't seen it in prose fiction yet. Sometimes, we see a character who provides comic relief become highly capable for a single issue or ...
16
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2answers
538 views

To what extent did Agatha Christie base Captain Hastings on Dr. Watson?

I've noticed that there are quite a few parallels between Agatha Christie's Captain Arthur Hastings and Arthur Conan Doyle's Dr. John Watson: Both served in the British military (Hasting in World War ...
14
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1answer
554 views

Understanding a reference to Tom Sawyer in the context of avoiding work

I am Brazilian, I frequent the Mathematica Stack Exchange, and I've never heard of Tom Sawyer. So it was confusing when I read a meta post that described people as "Tom Sawyers". "There are a few ...
14
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2answers
5k views

Is Simon epileptic?

From the moment Simon is introduced in Lord of the Flies, we learn that he faints a lot. He has his own place which he retreats to when he feels he is about to faint or maybe have a fit, and when he ...
14
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1answer
842 views

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 ...
14
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1answer
199 views

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 ...
13
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1answer
279 views

Does the description of Eustace's parents fit some known stereotype?

In the opening paragraph of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, C. S. Lewis introduces us to the (at this point in the story) singularly unlikeable character of Eustace Clarence Scrubb. About his parents, ...
13
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2answers
1k views

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 ...
13
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1answer
258 views

Why don't people in the Chronicles of Narnia have trouble “transitioning” back to their old life after extended times in other worlds?

In The Chronicles of Narnia, people often spend weeks, months, or even decades in other worlds. They return to their old life at the exact instant that they left as if they were never gone. For ...
12
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2answers
804 views

Why did the characters in “No Exit” agree to torment each other?

Once the characters in No Exit realized that they were placed there to torment each other, why didn't they refuse to do so? When Joseph says "eh bien, continuons" ("very well, let's get on with it") ...
12
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1answer
173 views

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 ...
12
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2answers
320 views

Does Nausicaä not develop as a character at all?

There will be spoilers regarding characters from the end of the manga here. In Hayao Miyazaki's Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (Kaze no Tani no Naushika) manga, the characters are usually ...
11
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3answers
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What suggests Edmund might be gay?

While I was doing some research, looking for an answer for Are Frog and Toad more than just friends?, I found this article listing 15 fictional characters the author thinks are probably gay. Some of ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Why does Steinbeck never name Curley's wife?

Curley's wife plays an important role in the novel and yet is never given a name. Perhaps Steinbeck was trying to not encourage the audience to develop a personal connection to her? I'd like to see ...
10
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1answer
554 views

Why did Morris and Clay preemptively dissolve the Red-Headed League?

Spoilers ahead for The Red-Headed League. In this Sherlock Holmes story, Holmes and Watson are recruited by a flustered pawnbroker, Jabez Wilson, who has been tricked into joining a fake society, the ...
10
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1answer
207 views

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, ...
9
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1answer
238 views

Why is there so little character to the character of Shadow in American Gods?

I recently finished American Gods by Neil Gaiman. Among the criticisms I felt fair to level at it was that Shadow, the central protagonist, is very much a blank slate. We rarely get any insight to his ...
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2answers
146 views

What is the source of Mr. Norrell's wealth?

In Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, the magician Norrell has cornered the market on magical books, which must have been a considerable expense. He also seems to have a considerable estate. How did he ...
9
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1answer
476 views

What is meant to be gleaned from Patrick Bateman's love of specific musicians in American Psycho?

I've just finished reading American Psycho, and I'm confused why the book took the time to devote entire chapters to Bateman's love of different 80's artists. Specifically, Bateman spends upwards of ...
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1answer
4k views

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 ...
9
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1answer
2k views

Is the character of Randolph Henry Ash based on any particular Victorian poet?

The novel Possession contains some spot-on mimicry of several different writing styles, including lengthy poems by two fictional Victorian poets. The character of RH Ash in particular feels as if ...
9
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1answer
624 views

The real-life inspiration for the characters of Atlas Shrugged?

Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is a good story paired with a (sometimes belabored) expression of the author's philosophy. I was wondering if there are any real-life connections to the characters of her ...
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1k views

How is the concept of cultural encounter treated in the short story “One Out of Many”?

In the story "One Out of Many" by V.S. Naipaul, how is the concept of cultural encounter treated? I have a few questions about that: Is the author aware of the cultural encounter theme? How does he ...
8
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3answers
835 views

How did Theseus woo Hippolyta by doing her injuries?

In A Midsummer Night's Dream, Theseus tells Hippolyta: THESEUS: Hippolyta, I woo'd thee with my sword And won thy love doing thee injuries, But I will wed thee in another key, With pomp, ...
8
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2answers
316 views

Was Captain Hook an Etonian in the original text?

The character Captain Hook, main protagonist of J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan, definitely attended a British public school: Hook was not his true name. To reveal who he really was would even at this date ...
8
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1answer
444 views

Why is Regulus Black a seeker?

In Chapter Ten of the Deathly Hallows, we're told that Regulus Black is a seeker for the Slytherin team. Is there any symbolism behind Regulus Black's Quidditch position? I got the idea for this ...
8
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1answer
160 views

What parallels can be drawn between Don Reba and Beria?

From the afterword of Hard to be a God: On the advice of I. A. Efremov, we renamed the Minister of the Defense of the Crown Don Reba (he had previously been Don Rebia—an overly simple anagram, in ...
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2answers
3k views

Is Jack (in Lord of the Flies) actually 'bad'?

For me, the real 'evil' in The Lord of the Flies was Roger. From the beginning the story shows how he has 'revelations' about how there is no one to stop him bullying and hurting. Jack, for me, ...
8
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2answers
766 views

Why is the Emperor Beyond the Sea named that?

Closely related: Why does the Emperor-Over-the-Sea play such a small role in the Chronicles of Narnia? Why is the Emperor Beyond The Sea in The Chronicles of Narnia named that? What sea is he beyond, ...
8
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1answer
107 views

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....
8
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2answers
189 views

Why does Night say Desire and Morpheus are alike?

In The Sandman: Overture #5, Morpheus speaks with Night while paying a "social visit". There, Night claims Morpheus and Desire are very much alike: Click for the full resolution I tend to agree ...
8
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1answer
879 views

Is there any significance to Major Major being a Henry Fonda lookalike?

One of the big jokes in Catch-22 is Major Major's striking resemblance to Henry Fonda. Why did Joseph Heller choose Henry Fonda in particular? Is there any significance to the choice, or was it a ...
8
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1answer
262 views

Does Puzzle the Donkey have an allegorical relationship with any entity in the Book of Revelation or the Bible at large?

C.S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia are a great children's series which present an allegory the New Testament and Biblical history. That said, Lewis sometimes put in things that don't necessarily reflect ...
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37 views

Was Edmund in the Narnia series loosely inspired by Edmund in King Lear?

In King Lear, Edmund, resentful of his inferior status to his older brother, betrays his family and frames his brother as a traitor. This strikes me as not being at all unlike what Edmund does in The ...
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58 views

Is Mike an anarchist in *The Moon is a Harsh Mistress*?

In the later parts of Robert Heinlein's The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, we find out that Manny and Prof are motivated by their anarchist political beliefs. They argue for these beliefs in the new ...
7
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1answer
399 views

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 ...
6
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3answers
470 views

Why does Ishtar insist on being called “Ishtar”?

There are many characters in Gaiman's Sandman stories that have multiple names; Morpheus is one of them. For the most part, they usually don't mind if someone calls them by one name or another. The ...
6
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1answer
262 views

Should Go Set a Watchman change our view of Atticus defending Tom Robinson?

I do realize that the passage of To Kill a Mockingbird where Atticus defended Tom Robinson has been heavily analyzed elsewhere at this point. However, it seems like most people got the impression that ...
6
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1answer
112 views

Does The Chronicles of Narnia promote deism?

Very related: Why does the Emperor-Over-the-Sea play such a small role in the Chronicles of Narnia? Also related: Why is the Emperor Beyond the Sea named that? The Chronicles of Narnia refer to ...
6
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2answers
6k views

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 ...
6
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1answer
277 views

What changed that made TenSoon want to run?

TenSoon is a kandra, a type of sentient magical creature in Sanderson's Mistborn series, and a proud one at that. After the events in the second book of the series, he travels to his homeland, ...
6
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1answer
226 views

Why are Delirium's eyes of two colors?

In The Sandman #21, some of the various members of the Endless families receive short biographic descriptions. Here's part of Delirium's (p 10): For Delirium was once Delight. And although that was ...
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202 views

Byron's transition from Manfred to Don Juan

Manfred is more serious compared to Don Juan's light heartedness. While Manfred lives within the realm of seriousness and continuous self-pity, Don Juan lives in the realm of cynicism as it brings ...
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123 views

Why did Dr Azad pay for Chanu's ticket to India?

"Dr. Azad," she said. "Why did you give my husband that money?" The end of his nose was pitted with age, his cheeks had given way to jowls, pockets of air puffed the skin around his eyes, when he ...
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73 views

In “Love,” who is Junior's “Good Man,” and what does that imply about her?

Late in Toni Morrison's Love, Junior starts referring to her "Good Man": And her Good Man agreed. As she knew from the beginning, he liked to see her win. They recognized each other the very ...