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 known as Jean Valjean. He is an ex-convict who is struggling...
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obviously the wretched are Jean, Javert, Fantine, and Cosette and Maruis start as miserables. But this novel isnt about some people's hard lives. it protrays an entire society ( the french's) and their struggles with poverty. Not only is Jean being judged for a small action, not only once but for the rest of his life, but he also has to payt for it. Les Miserables is all about how society was indifferent then to ones stuggles rich or poor. THe rich looked down on the poor, the poor looked down on the convicts, and the convicts looked down on the rich for treating them like dirt. Hugo doesnt just emplify how miserable the main characters are, but he also touches on the misery of everyone else in France. The book isnt just about these chararcters and their stuggles. It is France as a whole and the social injustice taking place at the time. It is France's poor who are the miserable ones ultamitely.