Due to the interdependent relationship between the individual and society, societal values can greatly influence the individual. It can be said that Goethe’s characterisation of Lotte and Werther clearly depict this notion in varying outcomes. Lotte is depicted as a compassionate and loyal character whose relationship with Werther presents her as somewhat naive. Despite believing her feelings for Werther are due to a brother-like connection, Lotte acknowledges her individual desires of wanting to, “keep [Werther] for herself.” (82) Throughout the novel, the heart and soul are symbolic of passionate love. With, “her heart squeezed tight, and a dark cloud [hanging] over her eyes,” Lotte abandons the desires of her heart. By depicting Lotte’s eyes, traditionally affiliated to be windows to the soul, as having a ‘dark cloud’ hanging over them, Goethe suggests that Lotte consciously rejects her passionate desires to complement the moral standing...
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...uggles to find any way to achieve societal acceptance, and who, in his final attempt to do so, finds a way to showcase his individuality one last time as he prepares to end this self destruction.
The position of an individual within society is defined by the interdependent nature of the individual and society. While it is true that the values of the individual, the relationships they keep and their self worth are developed by both intrinsic and extrinsic factors, it is true that a balance can be found between the two to ensure the neither influence from society or the individual is overbearing and harmful to the person.
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von, 1749 – 1832.
The sufferings of young Werther/Johann Wolfgang von Goethe; a new translation, backgrounds and contexts, criticism; translated and edited by Stanley Corngold – 1st ed.
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