The Seagull Theme Analysis
IB English 3
May 29th, 2015
Word Count: 1205
To What Extent Are The Themes of Love & Passing Time Depicted In The Seagull?
In the novel The Seagull, Chekhov places the ideals of true love and time side by side. Love for either a person or thing causes internal conflicts such as self-hate and feelings of unfulfillment for characters like Treplev. Sadly, the person that each character seems to have feelings for never reciprocates his or her love. As time passes within the novel, characters create an even greater yearn for something that, in the end, is never found. Based off of Chekhov’s style of writing, we can infer that characters try to find the meaning of their lives by love. The quest for love against time …show more content…
In the beginnings of the novel, Chekhov reveals Masha’s love for Treplev; however, Treplev, the talented writer, is in love with Nina. It is expressed in the beginning of the novel that Masha has an unbearable love for Treplev despite there being no love connection between the two. Masha’s love for Treplev is a burning passion that seems to increase day by day. Her love for him is so immense that she feels as if she needs to “rip this love out of [her] heart,” (Chekhov, 160) as there is no progress in their relationship. Masha wants to kill her feelings for Treplev, even if it means starting a new life elsewhere. She tries to break gender roles by proving that women can be stronger than men. She marries a man named Medvedenko because she is aware that she is “loving (and) hopelessly waiting...for years on end” (Chekhov,161) for something that will never happen. The manner in which Masha deals with her unreciprocated love shows the reader that one can overcome life issues no matter how difficult they seem. She proves to be a strong-willed character. In Masha’s case, time is not in her favor. She falls for Treplev when he is madly in love with the main character, Nina. Masha never acts on that feeling nor discloses her love to him, so Treplev never as much as acknowledges it. Masha is never truly happy without the real love of her life, Treplev. Because of this, just like most of the characters, a …show more content…
It is made clear in the novel that Arkadina is Treplev’s mother. Arkadina is first introduced to us through a conversation between Treplev and Sorin, her brother. Through this conversation, the reader can conclude that Arkadina has no interest in her son. Treplev believes that “if [his mother] were an ordinary woman, [he] might be happier” (Chekhov, 140) because of the “disorderly life” she lives. (Chekhov, 140). We see more of Arkadina’s conceited attitude when she asks Dorn, the doctor, “which one of us is younger? [Masha or I?]” (Chekhov, 150). Arkadina also mistreats her son and does not care about his feelings. She purposely speaks about Treplev’s writing and says “[he] writes a miserable vaudeville sketch.” (Chekhov, 165). In spite of Arkadina’s hateful words, Treplev continues to care about her feelings and long for a relationship with her. During a fight Treplev would “weep quietly” (Chekhov,165) because he wishes he was happier in his situation with his mother. Yet even though crying is a symbol of weakness, Arkadina continues to press forward with her anger by calling him “a nobody” (Chekhov,165). Chekhov created a natural relationship where a son yearns for his mother. This natural relationship creates a special sympathy and appeal for Treplev. In some ways, Chekhov wants the reader to believe that Arkadina actually loves Treplev, even though her love