• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Dostoyevsky and Voltaire are two authors of different eras who have chosen similar themes and motifs in their novels Crime and Punishment and Candide.

Extracts from this document...


Shazde Mehkri IB assignment 1 An essay on the analysis of themes like suffering, religion and love in two different world literature novels. Pieces of world literature have many similarities and differences that exist due to the cultures and time periods or literary eras during which the books were written. In addition, the way the writer thinks and how he has lived his life will impact the treatment of these topics. The similarities in these books are generated because of themes that unite them, such as love, religion, trust, and friendship, which create the body of a story. Dostoyevsky and Voltaire are two authors of different eras who have chosen similar themes and motifs in their novels Crime and Punishment and Candide. The story of Crime and Punishment is based on a man who commits a murder and isolates himself because of his guilt. While Candide is a novel based on a man, who travels the world in search of his lost love. Suffering, love, and religion are the most common themes that these authors have presented in their works. Though the concepts are similar, they are portrayed using entirely different techniques and methods. Dostoyevsky uses his characters to give his idea, while Voltaire uses the situation of the characters to put forward the theme. ...read more.


Cunegonde also suffers from poverty and become a sexual slave. Pangloss, the teacher of Candide, and Martin, the companion of Candide, suffers from depression. In this novel all sufferings is meant to communicate the flaws in the philosophy of optimism to readers. This philosophy states that everything that happens in the world is the best of all possible worlds. This philosophy is presented throughout the book. In addition, another important theme in these novels is the aspect of religion. In Crime and Punishment when Raskolnikov asks Sonya to read the story of Lazarus from the bible, she hesitates at first but then reads the whole story to him. By presenting such scenes in the novel Dostoyevsky is giving the readers the idea of man's ego ultimately leading him to the path of god. Similarly, Sonya giving the cross to Raskolnikov when he was going to the police station in order to confess his crime is a symbol of redemption. On page 407, Sonya says: "Go to the crossroads, and first kiss the earth which you have defiled; then bow down to the whole world, to the four points of the compass because you have sinned against it, too, and say aloud for all men to hear: " I have killed." ...read more.


Voltaire shows Candide's love towards Cunegonde. Candide travels the world in search of his love and even after facing terrible situations his love for Cunegonde continues. Moreover, while Candide was traveling he goes to the land of Eldorado and collects the riches from there. He gives this money to the needy people he meets during his journey, but also is fooled by several others. This shows the similar love for humanity Candide has. The old woman in Candide loves Cunegonde and therefore sells her to prostitution because it is the only way to protect her. In the same way the old woman does various other things that are in Cunegonde's best interest. In conclusion, both the authors have presented these themes in a way that makes the reader completely engross in the novels. The themes of suffering, religion and love are though very broad, but these novels have presented them in a very concise and attractive way. Voltaire in Candide and Dostoyevsky in Crime and Punishment urge the reader's to further explore the characters by presenting such themes. These novels can serve as great examples of stories for readers who are both interested in literature and language. As a matter of fact, a lot is common between these ideas. It is said that where faith is present love exists and thus one never suffers. The authors of the novel have proved this by their writings. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate World Literature section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate World Literature essays

  1. William Trevors short stories explore several themes; faded love, hopeless marriage, as well as ...

    He should be telling her his own secrets, and asking for her understanding. The harsh realities of his own life, the drab flat in Hampstead, not the home counties, his second wife's adultery, as well as his first wife also deceiving him meant that he had not had the courage to tell her.

  2. The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and The Drowned ...

    After the news, people at first "remained sceptical" and after "eye-witnesses"' confirmation, people only started to go and have a look. These different descriptions are made to convey the difference in society and that the city people did not believe it at first, this relates back to the theme of

  1. William Goldings novel Pincher Martin considered to be one of his best novels which ...

    He recalls his childhood, and even being in the bathroom. As mentioned before the recurring theme of the novel is Martin's struggle for survival, which of course is unsuccessful. Form plays a very important role which has an impact on the story.

  2. Gusev Analysis. Chekov brings up two ordinary characters that are suffering under the ...

    There is insensitivity and lack of humanity, even a cruelty, in Paul Ivanitch's constantly forcing his anger and views onto the simple and complacent Gusev. Indeed, Pavel Ivanitch enjoys in his reputation as an "insufferable" person, declaring: "I am protest incarnate."

  1. "Glass Menagerie" and "The Final Passage". Compare and Contrast ways in which you consider ...

    Thus the islanders were said to have been stagnated in time. The phrase "for history is a pattern of timeless moments" highlights the idea that the islanders live in a repetitive "pattern" by referring to them as "timeless" which implies that they are without change.

  2. The Paradox of the settings: St. Petersburg & the Siberian Prison in Crime & ...

    It is small, grimy, and depressing, and is even blamed for his awful psychological state. It serves as a microcosm of St. Petersburg "It's like a room without windows" (Dostoyevesky). This room takes on a character of its own. It illustrates Raskolnikov's mental turmoil, becomes an image of him to others, and reinforces his degenerate state.

  1. I chose to adapt a love letter, based on Voltaires novel, written by Candide ...

    I intend to portray yet a different side of Candide, one that displays how he struggles with and questions his love for Cunegonde, in parallel to Voltaire's writing. In addition, the reader can understand the more practical side of Candide, because instead of letting his passion overwhelm him, he turns to face his situation more realistically.

  2. In The Chrysalids by John Wyndham creates two comparable societies, Waknuk and Sealand. These ...

    Harriet has no control over the state of her child and there should not be prejudices against her. Waknuk?s mistreatment of women may be a result of men feeling superior over the female population. The men feel as if they are the alpha gender, and they feel the need to put women in their place.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work