The Hunchback of Notre Dame Analysis

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  • Topic: Quasimodo, The Hunchback of Notre Dame
  • Pages : 2 (610 words )
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  • Published : December 11, 2012
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Albert Lawrence T. Villanueva LS310

Claude Frollo uses the example of the spider and the fly to characterize the inevitability of his passion for Esmeralda and the certainty that it will destroy her. As the story develops he and Esmeralda are certainly drawn into a web of mutual destruction but what Frollo ascribes to fate the reader understands to be a carefully constructed plan to ensnare the poor gypsy girl and force her into submission or death. Like Frollo, the Sachette mistakes her own actions for the workings of fate. Believing that the gypsies killed her baby girl, the Sachette chooses to sequester herself in the Tour-Roland where she develops an intense hatred for gypsies while she practices extreme devotion to the tiny shoe, the only surviving relic of her daughter. Her readiness to accept what she believes to be her fate prevents her from realizing until too late that the gypsy girl she has vented her rage upon is her long lost daughter.

Loyalty, in various guises, steers much of the novel's plot action. Quasimodo's intense loyalty to Claude Frollo initially prevents the hunchback from perceiving his master's madness and when he does understand following Frollo's attempted rape of Esmeralda, Quasimodo is powerless to harm him. In the end, however, the loyalty Quasimodo feels to Esmeralda trumps his loyalty to his master and he pushes Frollo from the parapet to his death. Many of the characters are bound to someone or something by loyalty and the instances where they break that tie figure prominently in the story. For example, Esmeralda is loyal to her virtue because she believes that so long as she is virtuous her amulet has the power to restore her mother. She is willing to sacrifice her virtue to Phoebus, however, and her blind love for the handsome soldier leads to her destruction. Similarly, Frollo abandons his brother in order to pursue his passion for Esmeralda and this decision leads to Jehan's...
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