The Three Musketeers
What does it indicate about Dumas’s focus in storytelling that the tale of intrigue, the diamond brooch, occupies Part I of his novel, whereas the climactic Part II is not concerned with a political matter, but simply with the Musketeers' fight against Milady?
Examine all of the innkeepers presented by Dumas. Are there any common traits, if so, what? How might you explain Dumas’s presentation of these people?
Goethe wrote "Romanticism is disease." What are the dangers and pitfalls of Romanticism and how much does Dumas fall into them?
Pick one event in the novel, and discuss how it shows the potential for chivalry to become inhumane. Do you think Dumas includes this as a criticism of chivalry? Or that this is an inherent flaw in chivalry, which one accepts part and parcel with the whole?
We are clearly meant to sympathize with the Musketeers' decision to execute Milady. However, given the tone of the novel's end, how ambiguously do you think we're supposed to feel about this action, especially on the part of our heroes?
Is Cardinal Richelieu, ultimately, a sympathetic or unsympathetic character?
Considering both the political climate of Dumas’s time and of his characters' time, how might his decision to make Milady British (or appear British for much of the story) have strengthened her character? This might take some research.
We've discussed how Dumas’s Romantic narrative tends to meander rather than develop in sections. Develop an argument that supports this type of plot, putting together its merits as compared to what we would think of as a standard plot structure.
Pick a passage from any Balzac, Dickens, Dostoevksy, Wharton, or Hemingway novel, and compare that with any passage in Dumas. What differences are immediately evident? What similarities? What assumptions about life and events inform each work's presentation of the world?
Dumas’s father was a Napoleonic General who was dismissed from the army, which then refused Dumas’s family any aid after his father's death. How might these early life experiences have affected Dumas’s writing?
What writers today would you say write books that fulfill the role in our society that Dumas’s work did in his?
by bagettle2015, July 26, 2012
In accordance to that fact that Athos is always melancholy, we actually do know the source. During the book, while Athos and d'Artagnan get drunk, we discover Athos had an ex-wife, which turns out to be Milady. Later, we find that Athos did not know that Milady was a criminal when he fell in love with her. When he learns of her past, he believes that he hangs her.
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