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Demian

by: Hermann Hesse

Frau Eva

In addition to Demian, Frau Eva is the other character who has a complete hold on Sinclair's soul. She is, for Sinclair, what Demian cannot be. Demian is Sinclair's friend and mentor; Eva acts as Sinclair's mother and the object of his romantic love. Like Demian, Eva's primary role is to help Sinclair develop appropriately. Even before they have met, she serves as a goal for him, which he pursues vicariously through his pursuing of Beatrice. Once they meet, she is immensely caring, but also strong and commanding. She loves and coddles Sinclair, commiserating with him about the hard times he had during his adolescence. At the same time, however, she is strong and commanding, exhorting him to become more in touch with and confident of his desires. Eva is a symbol of perfection and completion; she encompasses everything—she is masculine, yet feminine, a mother figure, yet the object of intense romantic love.