A Superfluous Man: Shakespeare's Hamlet, Lermontov's A Hero of Our Time, and Conrad's The Shadow-Line


Yilmaz V. B. , Kamalova H.

AGATHOS-AN INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF THE HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES, vol.10, no.1, pp.123-136, 2019 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 10 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Title of Journal : AGATHOS-AN INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF THE HUMANITIES AND SOCIAL SCIENCES
  • Page Numbers: pp.123-136

Abstract

The concept of a superfluous man is mainly the result of some social and political issues in Russia in the 19th century. That is why Lermontov's A Hero of Our Time can be seen as a projection of these issues in literature. The novel dwells upon such features of a superfluous man like intelligence, self-awareness, isolation, doubts, and loss of meaning. However, these personal characteristics can also be seen in English literature in the remote 16th century and the modern 20th century. Shakespeare's young prince in Hamlet and Conrad's young captain in The Shadow-Line can easily be analysed under the same personal traits. This fact shows that some human characteristics can be analysed as categories that fall upon people under various circumstances. This study concludes that although there is a difference between the social, cultural, and political environment in the 16th, 19th, and 20th centuries in Russia and England, human beings breed similar reactions against changes in their societies.