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Les Miserables Romanticism Essay

909 words - 4 pages

With emphasis on individuality “the romantics valued emotion, intuition, and feeling over logic” (Milne) so in the case of “Les Miserables”, Valjean lets Javert go because of his overall feeling. Logically Valjean should want to kill Javert but because he judges the situation on feeling that he comes to the conclusion to free him. Various characters rely on their emotions to give them purpose. Each characters “happiness does not reside in material advantages and pleasures but in the reciprocal love of human beings” (MacMillan). Meaning that the various characters throughout the novel base their happiness on the ones they hold dear and not material items they obtain. For example Jean Valjean ...view middle of the document...

Rashly, Marius reverts to death because of how he feels in the moment not thinking clearly because his emotions are clouding his judgment. Marius finds happiness around Cosette and soon she will leave him for England, so he feels life has no meaning.
Following passion rather than logic becomes a prominent aspect throughout “Les Miserables” and the first act begins with Valjean. For example Valjean feels a sense of responsibility for his family and steals to make them happy. His passion for his family is so abundant that it drives him to steal a loaf of bread, because of this criminal act he commits he ends up in prison. Another act occurs when Fantine goes in to prostitution for her daughter Cosette. Fantine adores her daughter and will do anything for her, so when she loses her job she becomes penniless. The only way for her to pay for her daughter is through prostitution. Logically other people will look everywhere for a job and not give up but in Fantine’s case she is desperate. She possesses an overbearing passion to care for her daughter and will stop at nothing to achieve that goal. A second account of over bearing passion for someone occurs when Eponine strives to be there for Marius whenever time presents itself. Marius asks Eponine to find the address of Cosette because he needs to see her. Eponine completes Marius request and he doesn’t even appreciate what she did for him. Her passion blinds her from the truth and results in her death. Eponine save Marius’s life by stopping a bullet she does this because she loves him so much. Romantics valued “emotions, faith and spirituality over intellect and reason” (Kallen 17) and Victor Hugo portrays just that through his characters by having passion override their minds. Following a...

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