In Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s, Notes from Underground, we are presented with a complicated character named The Underground Man. He is exceedingly egocentric and believes that he is more intelligent than those in his surroundings. Despite all this, he is also a man who hates himself and often times feels humiliated. As a person who has isolated himself from society, he consistently analyzes and critiques every interaction with another person. For example, when an officer casually shoves the Underground Man In order to deescalate the situation in the tavern, the Underground Man takes offence to this and plots a long term solution to a meniscal problem.
Cornwell’s analysis on Dostoyevsky’s portrayal of the Underground man as a “superfluous man”, perfectly exemplifies how the author uses the character to express his beliefs and stance on the turmoil in Russia at the time this was written. As a “superfluous man”, the Underground Man seems to be alone and isolated because of his intelligence. Dostoyevsky, used the Underground Man’s isolation as an example of how Westernizers should be in society as they are not part of the people. The story almost serves as a warning to its readers against being a Westernizer. Surely, nobody wants to live alone and desperate for companionship and Dostoyevsky uses that to his advantage.
I ran as fast as I could, leaving him far behind with a wall of rain dividing us” (360). The narrator abandoned his brother during a vicious thunderstorm only because he wanted to retaliate against Doodle for not completing the program. Even the narrator himself said in the quote that a “streak of cruelty within me awakened” (Hurst, 360). The narrator knew that he was being cruel and proceeded with his actions, only out of spite and shame for his
He just fled hoping that abandoning his creation would solve the problem.“ I stepped fearfully in: the apartment was empty, and my bedroom was also freed from its hideous guest. I could hardly believe that so great a good fortune could have befallen me, but when I became assured that my enemy had indeed fled, I clapped my hands for joy and ran down to Clerval.” (64) He was relieved to return to where the monster had once been to find that it was gone. Which meant that he thought it would vanish as if it never happened. However, that was not the case, he was not able to run away from his problems. “From you only could I hope for succour, although towards you I felt no sentiment but that of hatred.
Ralph Ellison’s novel, Invisible Man, does accurately captures the racial injustice of 1940’s America. Due to growing up in a black-and-white colored world, the protagonist finds himself the reason for ridicule amongst whites in his own Southern community. He moves to New York to change this, and finds himself the leader of the Harlem Branch of the Brotherhood, a group that stands for black and white unity. However, he soon finds he is still overcome with racial prejudice wherever he goes. Through his experiences, he realizes that he is invisible to others, hence the name Invisible Man.
He uses an empathetic use of alliteration by narrating his inner feelings described as “a sudden swell of helplessness.” (55) He also reveals to us that he feared embarrassment. Everybody who reads this knows the pressure and expectations for something and not being able to do it. “All those eyes on me-the town, the whole universe-and I couldn't risk the embarrassment.” (57) He feels the guilt and pressures of everybody around him. He feels as though if he does not to go war, he would be seen as not “masculine” or heroic. This helps his emotions stand out and be known
Because he is imprisoned, he is inferior to the Nazis, and he knows he will never overcome them alone. He is angry because he cannot go back to his barrack, and he blames the Jews because if they were not there, he would not be there unloading them. He is indifferent in the beginning, and once he begins this emotional crisis, he can
Whilst it is evident that it is during the transition from the underground to the aboveground that Fred Daniels forgets his own name, without dialogue from the past as comparison, it remains a mystery whether his time in the underground is culprit in robbing him of his capacity for rational speech. However, as a minority, as a poor man and a black man, it is unlikely that he ever had access to the same literature and education that formed the foundation of the Underground Man’s massive intellect. Thus, as Fred
I restrained the impulse to knock the bowl out of his ungrateful hands and beat him up senselessly. He wearily sighed, as if he knew I was going to say that. “Unless you eat this, you are going to starve and die, because I’m not allowed to give you any of my food. You’re very weak and injured, and I don’t want any dead people in my house,” he drawled, his expression tired. “You’ve obviously poisoned this,” I said quite bluntly.