The idea of ​​​​writing the story of O. Balzac “Gobsek” - Honore de Balzac

Essays on literary works - 2023

The idea of ​​​​writing the story of O. Balzac “Gobsek”
Honore de Balzac

In world literature, we know many examples when writers comprehensively depicted their contemporary society, with all its shortcomings and positive features. Writers reacted sharply to the events that happened to his people, depicting them in their novels, short stories, short stories and poems. Honore de Balzac is an outstanding French writer of the 19th century. All his life he tried to realize a truly fundamental and ingenious creative idea - to write a cycle of novels under the general title "The Human Comedy", in which he sought to depict French society, creating vivid and original, nevertheless, images-types characteristic of the era. "Gobsek" is a story that was united with the "Human Comedy" by a common plan. In the 19th century, significant changes and transformations took place in the political and social life of France. As a result of the revolutionary events, chaos reigned in society, and not the “images-types” that everyone expected indirectly began to rule society. Gobsek is a realistic image, one of the characteristic types of that era.

Gobsek is a pawnbroker who made millions from his business. This is a solitary person who, however, consciously does not seek society. Gobsek takes extremely high interest from his clients, taking advantage of their predicament, in fact ruining them. He does not believe in human honesty, decency, love and friendship. This characterizes Gobsek as a callous and heartless person, and characterizes the social situation. It was an era of despondency in the best human relationships built on trust and respect. The world and society were imagined by many Frenchmen of that time as a big mechanism, whose name is money and power. Interestingly, the images of the story "Gobsek" are not one-dimensional. After all, Balzac's contemporaries were not unambiguous: many of them had an analytical mind, knew how to think independently, and were a non-overlapping personality.

In his story, Balzac protests against such a structure of society and the state. The writer rightly considers it erroneous, unnatural, unhealthy. Depicting people who are predatory to money, Balzac emphasizes that it is impossible to build relations with people, society, or the state on such relations. Creating realistic images, Honore de Balzac affirms the idea of objection to the abnormal structure of society, which gives birth to people like Gobsek, and the idea of money and power, which, of course, must recede before the values of humanity - love, decency, nobility,.

* — Must retreat... but, unfortunately, they don't always retreat.

Of course, the situation in our country is not at all similar to the situation in France during the time of Honore de Balzac. Nevertheless, I believe that the ideas expressed in the works of an outstanding writer are eternal and relevant for our society as well. Reading about France in the 19th century, we have to think about our own fate and the fate of our native state.I really liked the images depicted by Honore de Balzac in his story "Gobsek". No, of course, I do not like the usurer Gobsek, who plows open his own and cents, taking advantage of their financial impossibility. I was captivated by the manner in which the brilliant French prose writer Balzac portrays his characters. I think that Balzac achieves this effect of realism with the help of techniques, the most important of which, in my opinion, is the versatility of his characters. They do not have one dominant feature, which predetermines all their behavior, actions, thoughts (as it was in the literature of classicism). Complex psychological processes take place in the souls of the characters, they are carriers of different, often contradictory qualities.

The MAIN character of the story is the usurer Gobsek, who takes frantic interest from his clients, he is a lonely and locked up person who does not love anyone and does not need it. Nevertheless, this image is not at all unambiguous, especially not unambiguously negative. The jurist Derville, on behalf of whom the story is being told, speaks of Gobsek as follows:

* "Two creatures live in it: a miser and a philosopher, a vile creature and a majestic one."

It seems to me that such a characterization of Gobseck is accurate and very appropriate. Gobsek is a typical representative of his era (in fact, Balzac's intention was to create a realistic picture of contemporary society). So, we should not forget that in many ways, as a representative of the era, the features of Gobseck are due to this era, shaped by it and, one might say, born. No one will probably argue that Gobsek is a very dry, callous person. But every day he sees all the immorality and depravity of the so-called "higher world", all the disgusting and inhuman character traits of faces; who would have to be the best, the elite, the soul and intellect of society. I ask myself the question: would Gobsek have survived if he had a sensitive heart? I think no. But he had to survive! Since every person, whether he wants it or not, attaches himself to those who surround her. Gobsek does not believe in sincere human relations, in honesty and disinterestedness. Can he believe in this, faced every day with such actions that do not give any grounds for belief, not only among people? I think no.

I never justify Gobsek in his rapacity and cruelty, but I think that a person is largely shaped by the society in which she lives. A person must have his own point of view, not sinking to the general level, not degrading just because everyone is like that. So, a strong personality must file a protest. Was Gobseck's estrangement from society his protest? He is not a guarantee of a full member of that society in which they have fun, weaving intrigues with and against everyone, drowning in luxury, depravity, immorality. I'm not sure that one can fully understand Gobseck, but one should try ...