Rhinoceros purpose passage Essay

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In this passage, Ionesco creates a parallel conversation between Berenger and his friend Jean, and the Logician and an Old Gentleman in a bar in which the first two are discussing Berenger’s life and the latter are discussion a syllogism. This passage serves to exemplify how logic can be twisted, absurd and inexplicable beyond human rationality. With this passage, Ionesco goes far beyond the literary realm and into the world, commenting on the brutalities of fascism that can take hold of human emotions through simple misconstrued “logic”. He does this by creating a parallel conversation between two separate parties discussing two separate topics. Both, however, use circular reasoning and get nowhere: Ionesco exploits this to prove the absurdity of logic. He also has both characters use logic against itself in their arguments, showing its’ fragile and inconsistent nature. By the end of the passage, Ionesco proves the irrationality of logic with regard to human emotion and its ability to be completely abused and misunderstood by others.
The parallel conversations create a back and forth, not between the characters, but between logic and absurdity. While Jean is trying to help his friend win the affection of a girl, the Logician is trying, and failing, to explain a syllogism to an Old Gentleman. The Logician is imitated for his comic missteps in proving even a simple syllogism. Using ‘logic’, the Old Gentleman asks, his dog must be a cat, the Logician replies: "Logically, yes. But the contrary is also true” (Ionesco 19). This contradiction shows the ridiculousness of what the Logician is trying to prove, and also further goes to shows how ridiculous logic can be portrayed as brilliant or revolutionary much like fascism. At the same time, Berenger remarks to Jean that “Solitude seems to oppress me. And so does the company of others.” (Ionesco 19). By having both parties contradict each other consecutively, Ionesco clearly is showing the absurdity of human...

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