Character Analysis Of Inspector Javert

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Although Inspector Javert was often introduced and portrayed as a villain or an antagonist, I’ve read an article that defend and expressed the author’s sympathy for him as he committed suicide once his definition of justice is disproven by the main character’s action. Thus, I’ve decided to investigate Javert’s struggle between legal laws and moral laws. The central philosophical issue was the problem of whether or not moral laws are more just than legal laws. When moral and legal laws are in conflict, which one should we obey? It is similar to the idea of “Law of Man” vs “Law of God.” In his song, Javert exclaims “I am the Law and the Law is not mocked” illustrating that disobedience of the law is disrupting the civil order of a society. Yet, Javert is unable to grasp the fact that a man, who has violated the legal law, has upheld moral laws and saved Javert’s life. Javert questions himself about the perpetrator of legal law “shall his sins be forgiven?” and cries out “My heart is stone and still it trembles / The world I have known is lost in shadow.” His world view is shattered by the conflict between legal laws, which he has believed all his lifetime, and moral laws, which are upheld by a violator of the legal law. Unable to cope with the struggle, Javert commits suicide.
The specific definition of a legal law that is commonly agreed upon is a body of rules of conduct of binding legal force and effect, prescribed, recognized, and enforced by controlling
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