The Idea Of Evil In The Short Story 'Candide'

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In the short story, Candide the idea of evil is not present. There is a character in the novel that does not believe that evil exists, Pangloss. As Candide’s mentor, he has to show him that everything happens for a reason. Pangloss has the idea of optimism. As the novel progresses we see that Pangloss theory is wrong, Candide does not believe in it. The idea of evil is evaded because Candide refuses to accept the fact about its existence. Candide lives in Westphalia in the castle with the baron. Pangloss shows the world to Candide. Candide falls in love with the Barons daughter, Cunégonde. Candide has this idea that he deserves to be with her. He does not think about the consequences because his mentor has shown him that nothing bad can happen…show more content…
Old women approach them and say, “You do not know who I am by birth, and if I were to show you my bottom, you would not speak as you do, and you would reserve judgment”(23). This old lady then tells her story about how much pain she has gone through. She tells them about an event that happened when she had arrived in Morocco. She says, “I saw all our Italian women and my mother torn apart, cut into pieces, massacred by the monsters who were fighting over them”(25). She was the only survivor of this civil war and does not complain about the pain she has gone through. Later on, the women confess to Cunégonde and Candide and tell them, “A hundred times I wanted to Kill myself, but still I love life. This ridiculous weakness for living is perhaps one of our most fatal tendencies”(28). These experiences make the old women want to commit suicide. The idea of suicide revolves around evil, and this action is created by horrible experiences throughout your life. In the Catholic Church suicide is a forbidden action, if you kill yourself you are destined to go to hell. Evil is present in this world because of our actions. God has given us free will and we have been misusing this

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