The Meaning of Eldorado in Voltaire’s Candide

2476 Words10 Pages
The true meaning of “Eldorado” in Voltaire’s Candide has been debated for some time. The scene of Eldorado is the visual philosophy of Voltaire’s thoughts of what an ideal society would be. It is a land of richness and where there is a state of being equal in status, rights, belief, and opportunity; it is free of greed, claiming titles or importance, religious strife or contention, and there is no suffering (Mason 55). Eldorado also brings the reader’s attention in its scene to show the bad fortune of realities of cultures beyond its land. If this land is the ideal society one would wonder why did Candide and Cacambo who had traveled different countries and experience many test and trails would want to leave. Voltaire visual scene in Eldorado and the characters makes the readers think that being too optimistic can cause a misrepresentation of what reality really is. The method and visual thoughts of Voltaire’s have some authors and critics expressing their opinion on religion, science, governments, utopia, and wealth; that the land of Eldorado is one that is too good to be true, and come off as unreal. Eldorado is the vision of Voltaire’s utopia where the land is desirable amongst the inhabitants and consists of what the readers are to believe the perfect society. The land is clearly the best of the worlds that Candide traveled which is a reflection of Pangloss when he said, “in this the best of all possible worlds” (Voltaire’s 101). There are several critical analyses that examine the land of Eldorado. The first author I have chosen who gave an critical analysis of Eldorado is Donna Isaacs Dalnekoff, Eldorado as an, Impossible Dream, who argues the aspects of Utopia, “in contrast to the first six places through which Candid... ... middle of paper ... ... no prisons, and everyone is happy. I believe this could “be the best of all worlds” (Voltaire’s 101). Works Cited Dalnekoff, Donna Isaacs. "Eldorado as an, ‘Impossible Dream’." Readings on Candide. Ed. Thomas Walsh. San Diego, Calif.: Greenhaven Press, 2001. P64-71. Rpt. in Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800 vol. 110. Detroit: Gale, 2005. Literature Resource Center. Mason, Haydn. Candide: Optimism Demolished. New York: Twayne Publishers, 1992 Shanley, Mary L., and Peter G. Stillman. "The Eldorado Episode in Voltaire's Candide." Eighteenth Century Life 6.2-3 (Jan.-May 1981): 79-92. Rpt. in Short Story Criticism 112. Detroit: Gale, 2008. Literature Resource Center Voltaire, Francois-Marie Arouet de. “Candide.” The Norton Anthology of World Literature. Gen. ed. Martin Puchner. Shoter 3rd ed. Vol. 2. New York: Norton, 2013. 100-59. Print.
Open Document