Character Analysis: Voltaire's Candide

2237 words - 9 pages

Enlightenment poem “Candide” translated into Romanticism
Voltaire’s “Candide or Optimism” was written in the enlightenment era. Voltaire’s story is published in The Norton Anthology of Western Literature. Voltaire’s character Pangloss is a philosophy who taught about the all-powerful God, who created the world. Pangloss indicated the world must belong to God, for he was the only divine creator. Pangolss was also a mentor to Candide, who was the main character in the novel. Candide had a good heart, but felt very hopeless in life. Pangloss took Candide under his wings teaching him the “best of all possible worlds.” The enlightenment movement is closely seen in Voltaire’s writing style on page 378. Pangolss had an optimistic viewpoint, and belief that the world was good. Pangloss believed that a powerful God had created the world. Pangloss also believed that if people believed something was evil and wrong, it was mainly because they did not have a close relationship with God. The interpretation of the passage continues below on page 378 transforming from its original form of Enlightenment writing style to a piece literary work that represents Romantic content and style. The changing style of writing transforms, from the beliefs of natural law to humankind of freedom.
On page 378, “The Baron’s son seem in every way worthy of his father.” The tutor Pangloss was the oracle of the household and little Candide listened to his lectures with all the good faith of his age and character. Pangloss gave instruction in mataphysico-theolgico-comoloonigology. He proved admirably that there cannot possibly be an effect without a cause and that this best of all possible worlds "It is demonstrable," said he, "that things cannot be otherwise than as they are; for as all things have been created for some end, they must necessarily be created for the best end. Observe, for instance, the nose is formed for spectacles, therefore we wear spectacles. The legs are visibly designed for stockings, accordingly we wear stockings. Stones were made to be hewn and to construct castles, therefore My Lord has a magnificent castle; for the greatest baron in the province ought to be the best lodged. Swine were intended to be eaten therefore; we eat pork all the year round: and they, who assert that everything is right, do not express themselves correctly; they should say that everything is best. Candide listened attentively and believed implicitly, for he thought he concluded that next to the happiness of being Baron of Thunder-ten-tronckh, the next was that of being Miss Cunegonde, the next that of seeing her every day, and the last that of hearing the doctrine of Master Pangloss, the greatest philosopher of the whole province, and consequently of the whole world.”
Voltaire’s writing style clearly reflects the Enlightenment era, however Voltaire writing styles can be transformed to the Romanticism style of writing, as...

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