Questions and Answers for Les Misérables

Les Misérables

What is the rising action, climax, and resolution of Victor Hugo's Les Misérables?

Les Misérables is actually a lot of little stories all rolled into one; therefore, the plot structure will be different per story. However, Jean Valjean is without a doubt the hero of our story,...

Latest answer posted January 23, 2013 8:37 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What five social problems does Victor Hugo present in Les Misérables?

There are many social and political issues at work in Hugo's novel, but five of the most notable are as follows: 1. Unfair treatment of women: This applies mainly to women of the lower classes,...

Latest answer posted January 15, 2018 2:24 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

What are the themes in Les Miserables by Victor Hugo?

Themes in Les Miserables by Victor Hugo include poverty and its impact on people, different treatments of people in various socio-economic classes and the lack of social mobility in 19th century...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2020 12:22 am UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

What is the significance of the title Les Miserables?

The literal meaning of les miserables is "the miserable ones." The characters are french and the book is centered around their lives. The time period is the early 1800's. The main character is...

Latest answer posted March 28, 2010 8:23 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What is the social relevance of Les Miserables?

The play Les Miserables gives an excellent portrayal of the lives of people prior to the French Revolution and showed what led to that uprising. Historically, those are some excellent things to...

Latest answer posted July 17, 2019 1:57 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

Why doesn't Jean Valjean Kill Javert?

Jean Valjean does not kill Javert because he knows that whatever Javert has done to him, whatever Javert might wish on him, killing him is the wrong thing to do. Valjean spent years in prison for...

Latest answer posted March 15, 2018 1:09 am UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

What do the candlesticks symbolize in Victor Hugo's Les Misérables?

Candlesticks usually contain candles, which emit light. Light is often associated with spiritual awakening or understanding. For example, in Genesis, God creates light, separates the "light from...

Latest answer posted January 19, 2013 11:35 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What reasons prompted Jean Valjean to decide to leave the Rue Plumet, as we see in Victor Hugo's Les Misérables?

The first reason why Jean Valjean makes the decision to move out of their rented home on the Rue Plumet is that he had seen M. Thenardier repeatedly and was certain that "Thenardier was prowling in...

Latest answer posted January 20, 2013 6:21 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What is the theme of Les Misérables?  

The theme of Victor Hugo's novel is suggested by its title Les Miserables. If tells about the miserable lives of the poor. The thesis, however, is that one act of Christian kindness can change a...

Latest answer posted May 31, 2016 4:42 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

In "Les Miserables," why does Fantine leave her child with the Thenardiers and believe that is the best decision for...

At the time of Fantine's decision, remember, she is a single mother without a husband in a time when this was socially inappropriate. She was also poor and without means of a direct income. In...

Latest answer posted June 12, 2011 6:09 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

Who is M. Javert? How does he discover Valjean's true identity, and what are the results of this discovery?

Javert, a police inspector, is Valjean's enemy who pursues him relentlessly after he escapes. He is not a "good guy" however. His kind of justice is to punish with vengeance. Javert...

Latest answer posted July 10, 2007 5:26 am UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

Could anyone post ten to fifteen major events of the Les Miserables plot?

Les Miserables involves numerous plot lines and has many more than fifteen major events. In fact, it is one of the longest novels ever written. Some editions of the book are nearly two thousand...

Latest answer posted March 23, 2020 6:12 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

In Victor Hugo's Les Misérables, what does the quote on Jean Valjean's gravestone mean in reference to the novel? He...

The note refers first to the irony of Jean Valjean's life. He lived through countless struggles. He was arrested for stealing a loaf of bread to feed his seven starving nephews and nieces and was...

Latest answer posted January 20, 2013 12:57 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What did Fantine die of?

Les Misérables is a fictional historical novel written by famed French novelist, dramatist, and poet Victor Hugo, originally published in 1862. The novel has several plot lines; however, the main...

Latest answer posted August 14, 2020 12:33 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What happens just before, during, and after "On My Own" is sung?

In the musical play of Les Miserables, the character of Eponine is in love with the young rebel Marius. Marius, however, has just fallen in love with the main character's adopted daughter Cosette....

Latest answer posted September 26, 2007 11:45 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

In Les Miserables, why does Marius not live with his father, Georges Pontmercy?

Marius lives with his grandfather, a royalist, who considers the boy's father, George Pontmercy "a leper" because of his having been a heroic soldier, but one who served Napoleon. As a child,...

Latest answer posted January 2, 2013 5:43 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What instruction does Pontmercy leave Marius when he dies in Hugo's Les Miserables?

In Hugo's Les Miserables, the young Marius Pontmercy has been raised to believe that his father, Colonel Georges Pontmercy, a distinguished officer in Napoleon's Grande Armee, cares nothing for...

Latest answer posted March 26, 2020 12:40 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

Explain the significance of Hugo's view of human nature in Les Miserables.

Ultimately, Hugo's view of human nature is a contemporary one. Hugo suggests that the change and ability to transform oneself can be a source of great power within the human being. It is this...

Latest answer posted August 7, 2012 9:04 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

In Les Miserables, how do the attitudes and actions of one character make a difference in making the world a better...

The actions of Inspector Javert make the world a worse place. By insisting on tracking down Jean Valjean for the sake of law and of preserving his deeply held idea of order, Javert also insists on...

Latest answer posted September 27, 2019 10:15 pm UTC

4 educator answers

Les Misérables

What examples of figurative language can be found in Victor Hugo's Les Misérables?

Similes are very abundant in Victor Hugo's writing. A simile is a type of analogy made by comparing two things to show a relationship. Similes always contain the words like or as. One simile can be...

Latest answer posted January 20, 2013 2:00 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

Why does Marius leave his grandfather's home and refuse money from him?

Marius rejects his grandfather and his money because his grandfather allowed him to have a negative opinion of his father and kept them apart by threatening to disinherit Marius otherwise. After...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2019 11:30 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

Why does Jean Valjean rent the house in the Rue Plumet?

I sense two components to this question. The first would be why leave would Jean Valjean leave the protection of the convent life and need to rent the house in the first place. If Valjean does...

Latest answer posted January 4, 2013 12:59 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

How good is the good Bishop of Digne and how bad is the bad character Jean Valjean in Les Miserables?

The Bishop of Digne represents the height of humility, mercy, compassion, generosity, love, and kindness. If, to Victor Hugo, the French government represents arrogance, suppression, and...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2010 9:33 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

Why does Javert request that the mayor dismiss him in Les Miserables by Victor Hugo?  

In Volume I, Book the Sixth, Chapter II of Les Miserables, Javert has traced Jean Valjean for a long time. Having been born in a prison, Javert has spent his life in rigid respect for the law, now...

Latest answer posted November 27, 2009 1:16 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

How is Jean Valjean from Les Miserables like Jesus Christ, or can parallels between the two be formed?

There are absolutely parallels that can be drawn between Jesus and Jean Valjean. The most obvious one is the merciful nature with which they both treat other people, particularly those who were...

Latest answer posted March 18, 2019 7:17 am UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

To which bird is Cosette compared in "Cosette"?

Cosette is referred to as a "lark" in "Fantine." It is a nickname she is given by people in the town because she is so small and up before the sun. Sadly, "the lark never sang." In "Cosette,"...

Latest answer posted October 2, 2010 5:52 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What do you think Eponine and Cosette sacrificed for Marius that showed each girl loved him?

To speak toward the comparison of Eponine to Cosette, I'm afraid there is no comparison. Cosette sacrifices nothing. She is but a "lark" whom Valjean protects so completely that after a few years...

Latest answer posted February 23, 2012 9:48 am UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

What are examples showing that Victor Hugo's language in Les Misérables has depth?

Victor Hugo's language in Les Misérables most certainly has depth. Among other things, it is not only rich with imagery, it is rich with symbolism.One example of rich imagery can be seen in his...

Latest answer posted January 25, 2013 8:49 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What is the historical setting in Victor Hugo's Les Misérables, and why is it essential to the overall themes?

The years following the French Revolution were hardly peaceful. The poor still felt oppressed and many government factions were still fighting for power. Les Misérables is set during the 1800s,...

Latest answer posted January 21, 2013 8:47 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

Identify an effective quote about injustice in Les Miserables.

I had to pare down the original question. Hugo's novel is rooted in the idea of exposing injustice and seeking to bring attention to the fact that it is a condition which must change. I think...

Latest answer posted December 29, 2012 2:09 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What are the reasons that Gavroche, Jean Valjean, and Eponine go to the barricades in the Rue Saint-Denis?

Each of these three characters have their own unique reasons for arriving at the barricades. Gavroche's life is directly affected by the violence of capitalism, of wealth disparity, and of the...

Latest answer posted January 27, 2019 5:16 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

What are some of the film techniques in relation to camera angles and effects that they bring in On My Own, One Day...

The cinematography in Les Miserables is quite controversial in the world of film and theater. Danny Cohen, the Cinematographer, and Top Hooper, the Director, made some interesting choices in the...

Latest answer posted July 2, 2015 9:54 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

How do Jean Valjean and Fantine parallel one another and how do they differ?

Valjean and Fantine are cursed by two things: one, situation in life; two, bad decisions. Valjean was forced into a situtation of poverty and starvation by forces outside his control. However,...

Latest answer posted November 14, 2007 9:28 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What is the significance of the presence of children in Les Miserables?

The portrayal of children and childhood in a fictional work could be considered one of the defining aspects when it comes to determining the work's genre. Hugo's Les Miserables falls, in that...

Latest answer posted August 9, 2019 8:33 am UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

For the musical, Les Misérables, what elements of the music, such as the tempo, influence the historical...

Though written and directed more than a decade later, the musical, Les Misérables, written and produced in 1985, is very reminiscent of the rock music composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber for Jesus...

Latest answer posted December 19, 2011 12:42 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What is the irony in the fact that Jean Valjean broods over the address he finds carved in the garden wall and his...

Jean Valjean finds the address that Marius scratches into the garden wall at Valjean's house on the Rue Plumet soon after having seen Thenardier in London. Valjean feels threatened by Thenardier...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2013 8:17 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What examples of figurative language can be found in Victor Hugo's Les Misérables?  

One lesser known type of figurative language that Victor Hugo sometimes makes use of is called an apostrophe, which is different from the punctuation mark. An apostrophe is a moment when an author...

Latest answer posted January 20, 2013 2:55 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What is the relationship between sacrifice and love in Les Miserables?

Another example of the relationship between love and self-sacrifice seen in Les Miserables involves Eponine, Marius, and Cosette. Marius instantly falls in love with Cosette when he sees her;...

Latest answer posted April 1, 2019 9:13 am UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

How does The Bishop of Digne represent the thematic center of Les Miserables?

Two of the central themes in Les Miserables are what one might call redemption, rebirth, or even transformation, and human rights, particularly the lack of human rights found in the social orders...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2010 6:40 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

How does Jean Valjean turn his life around after his confrontation with the bishop? Use two quotations for support...

The last thing the Bishop says to Jean Valjean is Do not forget, do not ever forget, that you have promised me to use the money to make yourself an honest man. As we read the rest of Valjean's...

Latest answer posted May 31, 2019 2:03 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

How does one determine and summarize the plot of Victor Hugo's Les Misérables?

When deciphering, analyzing, or summarizing the main plot of a work of fiction, what you want to keep in mind is the plot structure. The plot structure refers to things like the exposition, rising...

Latest answer posted January 23, 2013 7:01 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

les mésirables and oliver twist could I make a comparative study between les mésirables and oliver twist? I think...

These stories would be great for a comparison study. You might also want to look at the differences and similarities between the two societies. The stories take place in different countries but...

Latest answer posted July 7, 2012 6:46 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

What is the role of the ABC society?  

The Friends of the ABC, are a group of young men, mostly made up of students (though there are others who are self-educated), who meet as a secret society and discuss revolution in the back room of...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2012 7:00 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

What are two critical moments in Jean Valjean's life that were influenced by religion, as seen in Victor Hugo's Les...

The first most important moment in which religion influenced Jean Valjean's life relates to the Bishop of Digne's mercy and generosity. When Jean Valjean was finally released from prison after 19...

Latest answer posted January 26, 2013 8:04 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

In Victor Hugo’s Les Miserable, at what point does Monsieur Madeline/ Jean Valjean realize who his real adversary is?

In Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, Part I, Book V, Chapter V, Monsieur Madeleine reencounters Inspector Javert who is now the police inspector of Montreuil-sur-mer where Jean Valjean has redeemed...

Latest answer posted July 1, 2010 7:00 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

How do Valjean, Cosette, and Thenardier each deal with poverty in Les Misérables?

Valjean and Cosette both struggle with poverty and become kinder beings while Thenardier deals with poverty by swindling and harming others. While Valjean does originally deal with poverty by...

Latest answer posted January 4, 2019 5:25 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

Valjean and the Bishop are moral but dishonest while Javert is honest yet villainous. Can there be morality without...

I have to agree. The dishonesty in these two characters is a dishonesty against a flawed system, but not against a system of higher morality (in this case, God). Both men act out of a pureness of...

Latest answer posted February 23, 2012 9:52 am UTC

3 educator answers

Les Misérables

How does Hugo express human misery in Les Miserables?

In Les Miserables, Victor Hugo neither ignores human misery nor enters into it in what might be considered a more contemporary approach or spirit (as in the device of deep point of view, or writing...

Latest answer posted April 23, 2018 10:08 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Les Misérables

In "Les Miserables," how does Marius uniuntentionally change his life when he falls in love?

As a poor student who decidedly lost the grace and the fortune of his grandfather, before meeting Cosette, Marius was a radical who wanted nothing more out of life than to fight for the rights of...

Latest answer posted June 8, 2011 4:09 am UTC

1 educator answer

Les Misérables

In what ways is Les Miserables a "social novel" that analyzes the problems of its day?

Much like his British contemporary, Charles Dickens, Victor Hugo was very concerned about France's social conditions, in Paris--much like the London of Dickens--these conditions were apparent in...

Latest answer posted March 19, 2009 1:09 am UTC

1 educator answer

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