Analysis of Voltaire's Candide; a Non-Satirical Composition of the Most Satirical Piece of Literature

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Analysis of Voltaire’s Candide: A non-satirical composition of the most satirical piece of literature By: Westley (A.K.A Nicky Flash) Allen

Westley Allen
AP Literature
Miss Gwaltney
April 29, 2013

Through literary devices such as persuasion, sarcasm, and elegant rhetorics, Voltaire successfully composes possibly the most well-known satirical pieces of literature. Mad magazine, The Simpsons, and Saturday Night Live, examples of some of the comical staples that satiate our desire for humor. In our society, satire is among the most prevalent of comedic forms. This was not always true. Before the 18th century, satire was not a fully developed form. Satire, however, rose out of necessity; writers and artists needed a way to
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Voltaire’s intelligence, wit and style made him one of France’s greatest writers and philosophers.
Voltaire use many writing techniques. The use of the various styles shows that despite the passing of centuries and through the language change, certain writing techniques will always be effective. Once common literary technique is the author’s use of one or more of his characters as his own voice to speak out the author’s own views on certain subjects. For instance, in Candide Voltaire makes use of several characters to voice his opinion mocking philosophical optimism. In the story Candide is asking a gentleman about whether everything is for the best in the physical world as well as the moral universe. The man replies, “I believe nothing of the sort. I find that everything goes wrong in our world, that nobody knows his place in society or his duty, what he’s doing or what he ought to be doing, and that outside of mealtimes… the rest of the day is spent in useless quarrels… it’s one unending warfare.” By having this character take on such a pessimistic tone, he directly contradicts the obviously over optimistic actions of Candide. In the conclusion an old Turk instructs Candide in the futility of needless philosophizing by saying that “the work keeps us from three great evils, boredom, vice, and poverty” (Pg. 159). In all of the examples, the character chosen by the author comes across as a

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