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Key Facts

Main ideas Key Facts

full title · Demian

author ·  Hermann Hesse

type of work ·  Novel

genre · Bildungsroman (a coming-of-age novel about education or moral development)

language ·  German

time and place written ·  1917, Switzerland

date of first publication ·  1919

publisher ·  S. Fischer

narrator ·  Emil Sinclair

climax ·  Sinclair's discovery that the woman he has been painting is Demian's mother

protagonist ·  Emil Sinclair

antagonist ·  Society in general—those who do not bear the mark

setting (time) ·  A span of ten years prior to World War I, roughly 1905–1915

setting (place) ·  Germany—Sinclair's hometown and the cities in which he is educated

point of view ·  An older Sinclair, looking back at his childhood

falling action ·  Demian runs into Sinclair, who invites him by his house to meet Eva.

tense ·  Past

foreshadowing ·  Since Sinclair is writing about his own experience after the fact, he is able to constantly foreshadow his future developments; this happens often with regard to ways he will think in the future, but also with events, for instance, the war

tone ·  Contemplative and analytic; psychological

themes ·  Psychology; good and evil; the will; narration

motifs ·  The mark of Cain; mentoring relationships

symbols ·  The sparrow hawk