The Importance Of Existentialism In Sophie's World

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All individuals come into existence with the ability to choose how they will be seen by their peers, and the choices one makes reveals their true character. In the novel Sophie's World the author Jostein Gaarder writes about a person's capability to choose how they want to exist in this world. The plot of the novel is based on the main protagonist, Sophie Amundsen’s educational expedition through a strange correspondence course in philosophy. However, it is evident through the author’s writing and opinions portrayed, that the overall purpose of the novel is much more than to solely teach his readers about different philosophers throughout history. Rather, Gaarder uses the novel to demonstrate his personal view of philosophy and through many points in the novel, it is made obvious to the readers that he holds an existential philosophy. Existentialism is a philosophical theory that is focused on existence and how each individual person has the free will to determine who they will become. The main characters, Sophie and Alberto’s journey to find freedom is the first illustration of Gaarders existential beliefs in the novel. Correspondingly, Gaarder’s appeal to specific existential philosophers such as Soren Kierkegaard proves his strong notion of existentialism. Moreover, the novel has an underlying theme of the …show more content…
This style allows the readers to not only follow the journey of Sophie and Alberto as they strive to reach freedom, but to also learn about many philosophical theories throughout history. Although Gaarder discusses dozens of philosophers it seems that he favours one in particular named Soren Kierkegaard, who was the first existentialist. Throughout his particular chapter and the entire novel, Gaarder’s ideas evidently relate to those of Kierkegaard, which prove that they both have the same philosophical beliefs. It is indisputable that Gaarder appreciates Kierkegaard's work when he

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