Who Is Jean Valjean A Hero

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Jean Valjean's initial character, found in Victor Hugo's turn of the century novel Les Miserables, is the result of a poor and broken society; he saw no other option but to steal bread to support his family. He went to prison as a kind, thoughtful, and devoted man, but left full of hopelessness, anger, and fear, becoming accustomed to only doing what was necessary to survive, leaving him with virtually no self-respect. After his encounter with the bishop, he developed into a sage and altruistic man. There are many examples of Valjean's heroism, perhaps spurred subconsciously by love and a sense of personal debt. Several of his selfless acts are highlighted with tragedy, conceivably accentuating the reader's connection with the storyline. The

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