Demian

by: Hermann Hesse

Max Demian

Characters Max Demian

We get to know Max Demian only through the eyes of Emil Sinclair. Since Sinclair sees Demian as almost divine, Sinclair would not be one to critique Demian, to offer deep insights into his personality, to see how Demian grows and changes. Thus, in Demian, Demian remains a fairly static character. This is just as well—Demian's function in the novel is to help Sinclair break free of his upbringing. Demian is Sinclair's guide through life. He watches out for him when he is being blackmailed by Kromer and offers him intellectual excitement. Demian teaches Sinclair to think differently, to discover himself and his desires. Demian is there for Sinclair during the final period of time when he is becoming independent. Finally, when Sinclair has broken free, become an independent being, Demian leaves him. Demian's purpose is to make sure Sinclair develops. Once Sinclair is equipped to handle the world on his own, to act in accord with his desires, Demian's purpose is fulfilled, his mission accomplished. He has no more use in Sinclair's life—he must leave Sinclair alone.