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The Leopard

Lampedusa views 19th Century Sicilian society as flawed and hypocritical, where religion, marriage and politics have all become empty vessels, used as a form of power and as a means of gaining wealth and social status. 19th century was a time of major changes and a critical moment in the history of Italy. It was the time of the Risorgimento, the campaign for the unification of Italy and it was a long and complicated process. Lampedusa’s “The Leopard” gives a spacious perspective into this revolution, but this however shadows the state of marriage, religion and politics within the Sicilian society. Lampedusa exposes these flaws in the society using irony and satirical humor. He states that these have all become empty vessels, an excess baggage, used as a form of power and as a means of gaining wealth and social status. Marriage became an outlet for sensuality and was used to acquire wealth and status. Religion was only paid lip service and was followed by many for acceptance within the society. While politics became a weapon for manipulation and a source of power and influence. “In Trancredi she saw her chance of gaining a fine position in the noble world of Sicily”. Lampedusa uses the marriage between the Prince and the Princess, Trancredi and Angelica to show that marriage has become an empty vessel which is ridden on only to achieve “a fine position in the noble world” and as an outlet for sensuality. He uses these characters to also show that like “The Paul Neyron roses” marriage degenerates over time and is replaced easily by new ones. The marriage between the Prince and the Princess is filled with emptiness and one that “Flames for a year, ashes for thirty”. There is no sign of any love between the Prince and the Princess and this is shown by the Prince’s visits to his mistresses. Lampedusa uses ironic humor “Love, of course love…he knew what love was” to show that a man who cheats on his wi...

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The Leopard. (1969, December 31). In DirectEssays.com. Retrieved 21:27, October 24, 2014, from http://www.megaessays.com/viewpaper/20807.html