This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Woland As Satan And Stalin Essay

1591 words - 6 pages

The Devil in literature has taken many shapes and forms. Depending on the culture and the time period, there has been representation of the devil that has resulted today in a complex history of this character throughout literary works. There has even been a demonic hierarchy that has come to be, where sometime Satan and Lucifer can be two distinct characters. One is the representation of evil, while the latter is the fallen angel that has dared to defy God. In Russian literature though, Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov follows the paradigm of the Faustian genre. A deal with the devil, and the presence of demonic servants is present, but there are three worlds that are portrayed which end up to be inexplicably linked. Written between the years on 1928 and 1940 reflect the political and social turmoil that Russian society experience, especially with the rise of communist and Stalin. The character professor Woland is introduced in the first pages, but one quickly realizes who this individual actually is. Through a detailed expose of Woland’s physical description, it becomes clear that he is not only the devil named Satan, but also is an allegorical rendition of Stalin.

Using Woland’s physical descriptions, it can be deduced that he is not only a devil, but also rather Satan himself. Woland is first introduced when Bezdomny and Berlioz are arguing about the existence of Jesus, and hence God.

“The subject was lame in neither foot, and he was neither short, nor hugely tall, but simply tall. As for his teeth, the left ones has platinum crowns, the right - gold. He was dressed in an expensive gray suit and wore foreign-made shoes of the same color. A gray beret was cocked rakishly in his ear, and under his arm he carried a walking stick with a black knob shaped like a poodle's head… Right eye black, left - for some reason, green. Black eyebrows, but one was higher than the other.” (Bulgakov, 6).

Having Woland description begin by noticing he was ‘lame in neither foot’ brings in even greater attention to his legs. The handicaps in his legs will be later described in order to create a connection with the fallen angel, who becomes prince of Hell. By being ‘simply tall’, he should not be mistaken to be an ordinary citizen, but rather someone that is physically imposing and authoritative. Possessing platinum and gold crowns, an expensive suit, and foreign-made shoes denotes his socioeconomic status, hence being an individual with considerable wealth. The black walking stick later turns into a sword, that is a direct reference to Satan’s status as a warrior, and his battle in the heavens. The poodle head at the knob of said walking stick is an allusion to Mephistopheles’ form when he is first introduced to Faust, in Goethe’s Faust. Having it6 be a poodle creates a connection with the devil, but not necessarily with Satan; however, that is accomplished with the sword disguised as a walking stick. Placing a peculiar attention to Woland’s eye color...

Find Another Essay On Woland as Satan and Stalin

Ironic Parallel Between Afranius and Margarita

876 words - 4 pages prophecy, of course, hints at Woland's own intentions. Finally, just as Margarita is about to leave, Woland surprisingly takes the gold and diamond horseshoe from under a pillow and insists Margarita take it, even though she refuses at first. In chapter 25, which not-coincidentally follows the previous scene, Bulgakov shifts to Jerusalem, where Pilate is waiting for Afranius to return from the execution. Whereas he had been sitting in his chair

The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov A review

2413 words - 10 pages good, for "what is light without shadow" states Woland. This relationship between good and evil is presented at the beginning of the book in the form of a paradox as a quote from Goethe's Faust, "which wills forever evil/ yet does forever good", Satan desires to do harm to God's creation but all of his scheming only results in a good outcome. Woland is an integral part of God's plan as what is evil gives individuals something to think about

The Power of Manipulation

1085 words - 4 pages audience did not notice this at all, as they were absorbed by Koroviev’s wonderful tricks” (Bulgakov 24). In this excerpt, Woland’s helpers, Behemoth and Koroviev, act on behalf of Satan. Although this interpretation of the devil is distinct from that in Bedazzled, it similarly emphasizes Satan’s vast power by depicting him in control of other forces of evil around the world. Not only does Woland possess immense dark power himself, so do his companions

Riders on the Storm

1284 words - 5 pages and receives a kiss from the beautiful witch, Hella, which we later find out has turned him into a vampire-all after he had disobeyed the commands of one of Woland's lackeys; second, Bezdomny gives up on his futile and crazed attempts to track the foreign consultant and succumbs to the insanity of his story and accepts that Woland is indeed, Satan.  Neither of these men expected the outcome of these events. There is at least one

Lycius' Dilemma

2013 words - 8 pages . The existence of Jesus Christ and Satan serve as a pivotal and divisive question in the novel. The Muscovites persist in their disbelief even when Satan and his cohorts are physically in their midst. The citizens write off strange and mystical happens as "the work of a gang of hypnotists and ventriloquists magnificently skilled in their art" (Bulgakov, 326). They seek a rational explanation for the ineffable. This disbelief comes to bear on

Stalin

1216 words - 5 pages escaped on January 5, 1904 (Chronology of Joseph Stalin 1). Continuing his work Stalin found the right woman Yekaterina Svanidze, whom he married (Chronology of Joseph Stalin 1). Stalin then attende the Bolshevik conference in Finland, as a delegate for Lenin (Chronology of Joseph Stalin 1). In 1907, Stalin's wife died making him a free man again (Chronology of Joseph Stalin 1). Stalin and Lenin slowly started to create Russians into Communist when

Comparing the View of Satan in Milton's Paradise Lost with Contemporary Views of Satan

1100 words - 4 pages Comparing the View of Satan in Milton's Paradise Lost with Contemporary Views of Satan In Milton's classic epic poem Paradise Lost the reader gains a judicious and even controversial vision of Satan as the protagonist of the epic. This is in direct contrast with our current idea and opinion of Satan as the leading nominal of evil and darkness. In Milton's Paradise Lost the Prince of Darkness is our hero. Perhaps not in the true sense

How Did Joseph Stalin Come to Power

2110 words - 8 pages Joseph Stalin was born on December 6, 1878. In June 1894, at the end of the school he was awarded as the best student, and at advice of teachers in September 1894 he entered the Tiflis Orthodox Theological Seminary. While studying at the seminary, he read a lot, regularly visited the library, constantly receiving warnings for reading forbidden literature. His first acquaintance with Marxism refers to the year 1897, and from there he began to

Hero of John Milton's Paradise Lost

996 words - 4 pages Hero of Paradise Lost John Milton introduces the reader to Satan in the first book of Paradise Lost. Satan is shown defeated in the Lake of Fire after rebelling against God in heaven. Satan rises from the lake and gives a heroic speech to his fallen angels. This displays Satan as a tragic hero, someone who is seen as great but is destined to fail. Satan tries to be the victor, but in the end Satan fails, and Christ is the true hero. Satan

Ovid's Metamorphoses

1621 words - 6 pages him: "˜Burn your parchment, I beg of you.' But he tore it from my hands and ran away." (p.21-2) It is as Woland later declares: "Manuscripts don't burn." In these two texts, once a document is written, it becomes a part of reality and history. Documents cannot be erased or burned, and often these documents take liberties with the history that preceded them. Ultimately, in these texts, there is always a punishment for misrepresentation. Ivan

Josef Stalin

668 words - 3 pages Russian people, led millions of them to their deaths between the years of 1928 and 1953. Determined to maintain total control, or power over the people and country, Stalin systematically killed, tortured, and violated his own citizens. Joseph Stalin was the dictator of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) from 1928 to 1953. Under Stalin, the Soviet Union was transformed from a peasant society into an industrial and militant superpower. As

Similar Essays

A Comparison Of Stalin And Hitler As Dictators

1504 words - 6 pages A Comparison of Stalin and Hitler as Dictators Adolf Hitler This assignment will introduce you to two men, Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin. Two men that were responsible for genocide and mass destruction, similar in many ways though on two opposing sides with completely different fundamental ideas. Adolf Hitler was born as Adolf Schicklgruber in 1889 in Braunau am Inn, in Upper Austria and committed suicide in a

Why Stalin Emerged As The Sole Leader Of The U.S.S.R. And Not Trotsky

754 words - 3 pages Why Stalin Emerged as the Sole Leader of the U.S.S.R. and Not Trotsky Trotsky was a leading Bolshevik and played a pivotal role in the revolution, persuading Lenin to delay the revolution until the Bolshevik’s had a much stronger place in the country. He also was crucial to the civil war, as he organised the troops and motivated them. Stalin on the other hand was in charge of all the dull jobs within the Bolshevik party

"As Long As Stalin Was Running The Soviet Union A Cold War Was Unavoidable." (J.L Gaddis, We Now Know). Discuss This Interpretation Of The Origins And Character Of The Cold War

2078 words - 8 pages that the activity the Comintern conducted until May 1943 was not only not broken off thereafter but became still more extensive."1943 was an important time for Stalin and the Politburo. With the situation at Stalingrad taking a turn for the better, the USSR would be able to be a lot more aggressive in it's pursuit of communising parts of Europe. As Stalin witnessed, Lenin was unable to take advantage of the instability n Europe following the

Mikhail Bulgakov’s Novel The Master And Margarita

2407 words - 10 pages cast as an unconventional, modernistic Satan whose power and works are used to provoke the Muscovites and the reader to ask the ultimate question: Where does mankind’s humanity actually lie? Bulgakov’s novel is unique in the way that he switches narratives from modern day Moscow to that of biblical Jerusalem. Woland is the only character that is present in both of these narratives and the significance of his appearance not only disrupts the