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Published: 05-09-2019

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The Ironical Tone Of Voltaire In Candide

Voltaire wrote Candide in 1759 during an “era… in which the conventions and inequities of European society have been being questioned and attacked on all sides” (v). It is apparent from the text that his ultimate objective in writing the novel was to point out flaws in French society, such as the value placed on money, unquestioning following of religion, and foolish philosophical speculation. The reader is bound to discover Candide, the primary character, and his adventures amusing and humorous, but the underlying messages of this seemingly light story are evident. One of the devices Voltaire utilizes is an ironic tone, which aids in exposing his feelings about the class program in France at the time, in which Candide represents the elite. Voltaire particularly achieves irony by generating entertaining of his characters, placing them in ridiculous situations, and exposing them beneath the light of humor.

Candide maintains an overly optimistic view of the planet throughout the story, even though he witnesses and experiences numerous disasters. His love for Cunegonde is challenged so a lot of occasions it appears not possible that anything could ever come of it. He journeys the globe, as he has been banished from his property for being noticed kissing her, and struggles to survive. But Candide believes he lives in “the best of worlds” (7), an thought uttered so several occasions he and Pangloss appear idiotic, considering that they seem to reside in the worst of worlds, plagued by tumultuous scenarios. Candide maintains a sunny outlook on the globe simply because he relies on blind luck to save him. His perpetual great fortune is much like that of the aristocracy at the time, who Voltaire despised for their inherently unfair privileges.

Voltaire’s selection of diction also lambasts Candide and the blissful ignorance of the individuals he represents. Each and every incident is described as affecting Candide drastically, even though nothing has any lasting effect on him. Soon after getting chased away from the castle in which he lived, Candide “walked a long even though with no being aware of exactly where, weeping, raising his eyes to heaven” (3). Candide suffers immensely, but Voltaire’s decision of words offers the impression of how a youngster would act following he is sent to his area. A youngster would believe of his punishment as catastrophic, until he is distracted by some thing else, just as Candide is by the dinner he quickly attends.

Candide’s unrealistic array of adventures begins to seem in no way-ending soon after awhile. He sees a bloody battle take location, hears that Cunegonde and her whole loved ones have been killed, and witnesses the man who took him in, Jacques, drown in a horrific storm. The reader is then produced to feel factors may settle down or become simpler for Candide. But he continues his journey, locating Lisbon destroyed by an earthquake when he arrives. Pangloss has been hanged for getting a heretic, and Candide is beaten for believing Pangloss’s philosophies soon after becoming hit with the news of his death. There is bittersweet news for Candide when he finds Cunegonde is not dead, but, rather, that she has been raped and made a sex slave. The two strategy to get married even so, Candide’s negative luck is far from over. He loses Cunegonde to a wealthier man who proposes to her. He resumes his tumultuous adventuring, which consists of virtually receiving eaten by a Biglug tribe, and has the fortune he finds in El Dorado stolen from him. Candide is not a noble man nor an intelligent a single, so the reality that he has lived through all of this, let alone remained optimistic, is outrageous such experiences would send other people into anger or despair. Even much more ironic is the fact that almost everything turns out perfectly for Candide in the finish Cunegonde leaves her husband and marries him. Ironically, he “had no want to marry Cunegonde” (84), the love of his life. But he does so since Cunegonde begs her brother, the Baron of the castle Candide resided in, to allow them to wed. Candide finds out Pangloss was not really killed and bands with him when again. He takes up gardening and lives a very excellent life, reunited with several characters in a sudden and seemingly not possible style.

To add to the irony of Candide, the characters are placed in humorous circumstances and use language that intensifies the comedic impact. Candide’s optimism is an exaggerated trait that parallels the attitude of many individuals. Voltaire’s point is, perhaps, that such an outlook is not the best policy. Perhaps people should not go even though life passively accepting what happens to them, hoping factors will increase, but instead by becoming proactive. Candide’s good luck is unrealistic and can't be attributed to his manner of seeing the globe. He loses his fortune as rapidly as he comes across it, reflecting Voltaire’s opinion that income ought to be earned men and women who are born with it or randomly stumble upon it deserve to drop it rapidly. He also is not fond of unnecessary formalities, revealed when he describes Pangloss as “professor of metaphysico-theologico-cosmolo-nigology” (1). Pangloss wants his title to be admired, but Voltaire incites the reader to find it laughably excessive.

Hence, by means of its potent use of irony, Candide is a classic example of satire. The conditions and attitudes in the story humorously parallel these current in real life at the time. Voltaire makes use of irony in his descriptions to point out that the conditions in the story and, consequently, reality are ridiculous. It is hardly surprising that right now, consequently, Candide is a prominent novel of historical importance.
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