Tartuffe Essay Sample

The play Tartuffe was first performed in May 1664 and it received a lot of backlash for it was stated that it was “attacking” the religion through the portrayal of a hypocrite named Tartuffe. The people who felt that the play was demeaning convinced King Louis XIV to ban it. The play is quite popular and controversial from the time it was released, and this is mainly due to its attack on the hypocrisy that exists in the religious sector. Orgon, a dim and kind character invites Tartuffe to his place without understanding that this person will cause a disturbance in his life. Tartuffe presents the image of a kind minister while in the real sense, he is a conman who is working on robbing Orgon. Orgon does not have a clue about Tartuffe mission, but his family works hard to reveal the Tartuffe true character. One of the modern day problems that are causing a lot of chaos in the society is the people who are hiding their character presenting themselves as people of great value while they are doing this with a bad motive. Hypocrisy in religion is a bad attitude that a significant number of people in the present world have adopted with the desire to benefit themselves at the expense of others.

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In the play Tartuffe, Moliere utilizes plot with the aim of opposing and defending the characters that tend to ridicule and act as a symbol of the behavior that was depicted during the neo-classical period. In this play, a good number of the characters involved are flat, and they tend to have similar traits, and at the end of the play, they adopt the role of undertaking peace initiatives to bring harmony in the society. He creates the image that all the people in a family setting need to follow the orders made to them, be obedient, mindful of others and respect them. The virtue of being obedient is brought out through Mariane and this is evident when she makes the statement that “To please you, sir, is what delights me best.” There is an instance that Orgon requests Mariane to marry Tartuffe despite her having no feeling towards him an indication that men in the society have a lot of authority and control on the various issues happening in the social circles. Despite the lack of emotional attachment to Tartuffe, Mariane obeys her father’s orders and this works to show that the Neo-Classical elements are realized in the play where it seems that the society is more important in comparison to an individual.

The issue of reasoning and logic is also portrayed in this play where Moliere shows Orgon making dumb decisions by inviting Tartuffe to his house without the understanding of his intentions. His family even tries to notify him that Tartuffe is to no good, but he is not ready to listen to them. Tartuffe works towards making Orgon believe that the accusations being made by Damis are false, but Orgon notices that there is something wrong with these details and he tells Tartuffe that he now understands his motives. Orgon even fails to listen to his son and states that the reasoning being made by the young boy is based on his lack of knowledge. The idea raised in this case tends to challenge the belief raised by Neo-Classical which claims that emotions are of low value while logic and reasoning holds more power. He acts base on his emotions, and this makes him believe that his family does not like Tartuffe and that is why they are stating that he is not a good person. At the end of the play, Damis returns home, and this is followed by the arrest of Tartuffe thus leading to order being restored in the family. At this point, Moliere passes the message that all the activities that are done in the darkness will eventually come to light and everyone will know the people who are on the wrong and the ones who are doing the right thing.

The problem that has been analyzed in this case is the hypocrisy and Swift would address, such an issue by the creation of the sense of instability in the various characters way of thinking. In this case, Swift would have raised a solution that would have seemed controversial, but the end of, it would have raised a positive outcome. In an example, there is a possibility that he would have stated that Tartuffe needs to be cannibalized for this procedure would have helped to eliminate him from the society. At the end of the play, order is only restored in the family when Tartuffe is locked in jail meaning that eliminating him from the society was the issue that would have ensured that there are peace and harmony (Moliere 361, 84-87). Therefore, according to Swift, doing anything that would have taken Tartuffe away from the family would have been a good solution to the issue of ending hypocrisy even though it would have proved to be controversial.

Work Cited

Moliere, Jean Baptiste. “Tartuffe.” The Northern Anthology of World Literature. Gem. ed. Martin Puchner. 3rd ed. Vol F. New York; Northern, 2012.144-97. Print.

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