To Fit Or Not To Fit?

1004 words - 5 pages

Candide, written by Voltaire tells the story of a young man and his circum-gloabal travels in search of love. His life, though separated by millennia, is like the lives of Odysseus and Gilgamesh, great heroes of old. The Archetypal Hero model and their following of it connects them. Though some purport that this is false, Voltaire clearly displays this through his writing. Candide has a goal, to find Cunegonde, friends and mentors help him along the way, and in the end he discovers even more than he sought for. These show Candide follows the pattern of The Archetypal Hero.
Candide, after finding Cunegonde by accident then losing her, devotes the rest of his travels to finding and marrying her. He stops at nothing to achieve this goal. Along the way and at the end he displays loyalty to her, even though his path is beset with danger. This goal completes one of the requirements for The Archetypal Hero model. This likens him to the great of old. Like Odysseus, trying to get back to Ithaca, and Gilgamesh, searching for a way to become immortal, followed their goals, Candide devotes his riches and his time to the finding and eventually marrying her. Candide displays his loyalty to Cunegonde even after he saw “how weatherbeaten his lovely Cunegonde had become” {137}. The fact that she became ugly would cause most men to turn away and leave her. “At the bottom of his heart, Candide had no wish to marry Cunegonde” {138}, but he still did. Candide stays because of his loyalty and honor. This was also a temptation along the way for him to not complete his goal, for his loyalty he later discovers the secret to happiness.
Many mentors and friends accompany Candide on his journey. Over time they join him until at the end he journeys with 7 or 8 people. Pangloss, Martin, and Cacambo make up his core group of mentors and friends. Pangloss taught him all he knew in the beginning and journeyed with him until Portugal. Later on in the story he reunites with Candide on a Turkish ship. Cacambo is a met during the time around his American visit. “Cacambo, whose advice was as consistently good as the old woman’s” (74) led Candide through this time. Here Cacambo is not only a mentor, but also a friend to Candide, he actually cares about Candide’s welfare and looks out for him. This meets up with the guidelines from The Archetypal Hero model, not fulfilling only one, but two roles. Candide in Turkey “consulted Pangloss, Martin, and the faithful Cacambo” (138). Once again it can be seen that they are his mentors, they each have their own philosophy on life which they teach to Candide. They are all also guides helping him through difficult stages of his life. These people, though often overlooked, form the backbone of the journey, because without them Candide would have failed.
Some may say that Candide does not follow The Archetypal Hero model because he does not come for...

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