Characters Discussed

(Great Characters in Literature)

Alexander Walpurg

Alexander Walpurg, a mad poet confined in an insane asylum. The twenty-nine-year-old Walpurg embodies the romantic conception of the poet as reflected in his model, German poet Heinrich von Kleist. His life has been in total service to his art and has been lived on the edge, filled with excesses in drink, drugs, sex, and violence. Walpurg represents the romantic stereotype of the poet physically as well, with his dark complexion, brooding good looks, slender figure, and disheveled beard and mustache. Walpurg views the creative process as a power that compels him to create and views his madness as a symptom of the highly explosive and unpredictable creative surge that propels him to rebel against social conformity.

Sister Anna

Sister Anna, whose real name is Alina, a young nun assisting in the psychiatric ward where Walpurg is confined. Sister Anna entered the convent when her lover abandoned her under the influence of Walpurg’s poetry, which they used to read together. Believing that she can save Walpurg from despair, she takes off her nun’s habit and large cross on a chain and releases Walpurg from his straitjacket, revealing in their subsequent lovemaking an ardent and passionate temperament. She is a very pretty light blonde with a twenty-two-year-old’s naïveté and vulnerability.

Dr. Jan Bidello

Dr. Jan Bidello, a non-Freudian psychiatrist and one of the doctors working on Walpurg’s...

(The entire section is 611 words.)