The Romantic Hero in Pechorin, Onegin, and the Demon Essay example

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The Romantic Hero in Pechorin, Onegin, and the Demon

Through examining the works of Lermontov, A Hero of Our Time, and “The Demon,” as well as Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin, we can see the similarities between Pechorin, the Demon, and Onegin and how each character embodies the qualities of the romantic hero. A romantic hero is a very contradicting character. For example, in the History of Russian Literature by Charles A. Moser, he describes the romantic hero as having “the anguish of emptiness; the trembling anxieties of a shallow self-love – as well as genuine power and courage; noble aspirations along with ignorance and poor upbringing” (137). All of the traits stated above are very conflicting. Pechorin, Onegin and the Demon, being the
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Pechorin, being the tactless character he is, treats women as an incentive for endless conquests and does not consider them worthy of any particular respect. He considers women, such as Princess Mary, to be little more than a romantic game and they have no meaning to him. This is shown in his comment on Princess Mary: “I often wonder why I’m trying so hard to win the love of a girl I have no desire to seduce and whom I’d never marry” (Lermontov, 126). This quote is a perfect example of how Pechorin can be extremely self-serving and disregard the feelings of others. It also exemplifies his inability to return to the strong feelings of love.

Toward the end of the novel we explore Pechorin’s final adventures that lead to his downfall and isolation from society, resulting in his death. It is in his final adventures that we see Pechorin take a turn for the worse as he says, “And perhaps tomorrow I’ll die…so why bother to live” (Lermontov 157). In this passage it becomes clear as day that Pechorin has fallen into a deep depression. The constant change in personality and character is the exact reason that explains how Pechorin is a perfect example of the literary romantic hero.
Pechorin describes his own personality as self-destructive, and he came to the realization that he doesn't understand his purpose as he constantly questions why he is involved in many situations throughout the novel. His boredom with life, and feeling of emptiness, gives him
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