In Around the World in 80 Days, is Passepartout more of a help or a hinderance I'd like to hear what anyone thinks. Thanks!Is Passepartout more of a help or a hinderance I'd like to hear what...

In Around the World in 80 Days, is Passepartout more of a help or a hinderance I'd like to hear what anyone thinks. Thanks!

Is Passepartout more of a help or a hinderance I'd like to hear what anyone thinks. Thanks!

Asked on by raw15

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kplhardison's profile pic

Karen P.L. Hardison | College Teacher | eNotes Employee

Posted on

Since Passepartout is both valet (bound to aid the master) and comic relief (bound to be amusing) he is a mixed bag of help and hindrance. One instance exemplifies the pattern: He allows Fogg to focus on his flight by keeping unpleasant things from him (and with Fogg's name, he needs all the assistance to focus he can get) and allows him to get arrested upon alighting in England.

And for accessteacher: "hindrance" has only one accepted spelling in both British English and American English (ol' Webster didn't muck with that one ...!): h-i-n-d-r-a-n-c-e. It's from late Middle English hinderaunce, thus the central "er" is not the noun forming suffix -er so was long ago dropped from the spelling.

UK: http://www.oxfordadvancedlearnersdictionary.com/dictionary/hindrance

US: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/hindrance

accessteacher's profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I like this question! By the way, is it just Brits that spell it "hindrance"? Nevermind. For me, Passepartout ironically defies his name by being more of a hindrance than a help. Note the way in which Passepartout is the Achilles heel of Fogg, being the means that Fix uses to delay Fogg and to try and stop him from achieving his goal. He is a very earnest servant who is trying so hard to be helpful that actually more often than not he is unhelpful and delays Fogg.

stolperia's profile pic

stolperia | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Fun question!  Let's move it to the Literature Discussion Forum so you can collect more points of view.

I'll start the vote by saying Passepartout is more a help than a hinderance. I'm sure I am strongly influenced in taking this stand by the fact that I love to travel in large measure because I love becoming involved in new cultures and seeing new places. Passepartout would be my idea of the perfect traveling companion because he would also be eager to experience as much as possible of every new place we encountered. Phineas Fogg, on the other hand, would have been quite willing to wear blinders for the entire 80 days of the expedition - his sole focus is to complete the trip as quickly as possible. What a shame!

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