A Hero of Our Time - Lermontov's Views Through Pechorin

Topics: Russia, Mikhail Lermontov, Military Pages: 4 (1397 words) Published: October 29, 2012
Lermontov’s Characters and Russian Society

In A Hero of Our Time, by Mikhail Lermontov, the author uses the multiple settings in each book to express different characteristics of Pechorin, which reveals Lermontov’s views of 19th century Russian society. Lermontov’s views of 19th century Russian society become apparent in many of his works, especially his novel A Hero of Our Time. Each town in the novel aspires different characteristics of the main character, Pechorin. Every characteristic revealed through the towns epitomizes the buildings of a socially acceptable male during this time period.

The town of Taman lacks a formal government in 19th century Russia and the people of this time struggle to avoid sickness. Pechorin looks down upon the poor, helpless individuals in the town of Taman. In Russia during this time period, this town lacked a formal government, so everyone fended for themselves. A lack of order explains the run down homes and sickly people. Pechorin thrives on the upper class, which reveals the root of why he looks at the sickly individuals in disgust. Pechorin arrives in Taman and feels uneasy about the people in that town. “I confess that I have a violent prejudice against all blind,, one-eyed, deaf, dumb, legless, arm-less, hunch-backed and such like people” (Lermontov 58). Pechorin’s sense of prejudice against the disabled expands the reader’s knowledge of his ways and the way he was brought up in society. As a child, Lermontov’s grandparents spoiled him in countless ways, which explains his upper-class views. These views are revealed through Pechorin’s actions towards situations and how he encounters the people of Taman. Pechorin treats the town as bad as it appears, and he explains his troubles in the ugliest of fashions. “Taman is the nastiest little hole of all the seaports of Russia. I was all but starved there, to say nothing of having a narrow escape of being drowned” (Lermontov 57). A thought of being starved in the town...
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