The Big Sleep- the Depiction of Marlowe as a Modern-Day Knight

Topics: Philip Marlowe, Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep Pages: 4 (1520 words) Published: December 8, 2012
The Big Sleep- The depiction of Marlowe as a modern-day knight

The novel “The Big Sleep” by Raymond Chandler was published in 1939 during the heart of the Great Depression. The novel is written in a very sinister, dark and kind of a gangster tone and carries much of the cynicism of 1930s America. The Big Sleep is a story of intrigue, corruption, delinquency and obliquity with a rather complex plot which can be very confusing. The main character in “the Big Sleep” is the private detective Philip Marlow who is very masculine man with values and a good moral. His strong moral is often evidenced throughout the novel. Marlowe is the only one in this complex world who cannot be corrupted because the other characters are all described as sleazy, vampy and decadent. Considering all these aspects; Marlowe is different to all the other characters, somehow superior. This superiority is somehow underlined through the depiction of Marlowe in the novel. Marlowe embodies the characteristics of a knight in many different ways, namely through his morality, faithfulness, and symbolism throughout the novel. There is a lot of imagery of knights in this novel and there is always a parallel between the imagery and Marlowe. Furthermore, the most evidential proof is Marlowe´s moral, exemplary and chivalrous behavior that is displayed throughout the whole novel which is giving point to the depiction of Marlowe as a knight. In particular, Philip Marlowe can be depicted as a modern-day knight as he is frequently compared to a knight through the imagery in the novel, his chivalrous behavior and his loyalty and commitment. This thesis is going to be analyzed and reinforced within this essay through several examples and interpretations. The novel is full of symbols, metaphors and different themes and one of the most important and obvious ones is surely the symbol of the knights and hence the associated attributes. The importance of this symbol can not only seen by the fact that already at...
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