“character” in Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 26, 2007

·     Andre-Louis is clearly a larger-than-life character. We meet him as an obscure attorney representing Privilege, but, enraged by the murder of his friend, he embarks on a succession of spectacular careers. He becomes a political orator, with a message he does not believe. Forced to go underground, he hides in plain sight as the actor Scaramouche in a traveling cast of players. When his own actions destroy that career, he becomes a fencing master, inventing new techniques that later become the standard. Later, a member of the National Assembly drafting the constitution for the new republic of France.    ·     Through all of his many incarnations, Andre-Louis controls his feelings with an iron determination, and we never really learn what he’s all about. Whatever he is feeling for Aline is never revealed. He is not given to introspection.   ·     M. de Kercadiou, Andre-Louis’s godfather to Andre-Louis: “Why can’t you express yourself in a sensible manner that a plain man can understand without having to think about it?” But Andre-Louis always hides his feelings behind a veil of sarcastic humor and his self-imposed rigid Stoicism, of which he is so proud. he says many times that he is not a man of action, but this is not true. He exists almost solely through his actions, not his thoughts, and surely not his feelings.  


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