Theme Of Guilt And Redemption In Fifth Business By Robertson Davies

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Fifth Business explores themes of Guilt and Redemption In the novel fifth business by Robertson Davies, the themes of guilt and redemption are explored in three of the characters: Dunstan, Percy and Paul. All three characters remains attached to their childhood misery and sorrow created in Deptford. However Paul and Dunstan carry the guilt about their past experiences although Percy on the other hand does not, however he is affected by it at the end of the story. Redemption is achieved at different levels at the end of the novel. The protagonist Dunstan is the one that carried the most guilt throughout the story. To start with, his entire life is based on the guilt for taking away Mrs.Dempster’s sanity, causing Paul’s premature birth, which was caused by hitting her with the snowball and it was not even his fault. He is also obsessed with the hagiography to show that Mary is a saint and it all leads back to his involvement with the snowball. Dunstan feels responsible for Mary and that makes him identify her as saint which makes it hard for other people to be a part of his life. Dunstan “despises almost everyone except Paul’s mother” (pg. 208) when “he should have spread the affection amongst fifty people.” (pg. 208). Moreover, according to Liesl it is their fault Dunstan befriended loneliness and took the role of a stranger in his own life. Dunstan do not marry because of his guilt, which leads him to think he does not deserve love. As Dunstan is tortured by guilt he

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