Monday, June 23, 2014

"Of Human Bondage" Reveals Maugham's “Belief in the Meaninglessness: Classifying the different kinds of Bondage

“Money is like a sixth sense without which you cannot make a complete use of the other five.”- W. Somerset Maugham

Apparently, Somerset Maugham’s Of Human Bondage is about a medical student who falls in love with a mean-spirited waitress. Diving deep into the story it, however, proves that it is more than that. Read More Novel According to Somerset Maugham, it is of multiple ‘human bondage’ which may be classified into several ways. First of all, there is the bondage related with the birth of a person. For example, Phillip, the central character of Of Human Bondage suffered from an inferiority complex on account of his poor birth and a club-foot. He suffered both in the class-room as well as in the society.

There is also the body-bondage which keeps a person under painful conditions till death. Love and marriage are only illusion because they fail to afford real pleasure of life. Read More Modern Period In most of the eases, unhappiness arises out of failure, defeat, or death. Thirdly, there is the spirit bondage which incites a person for rebellion. The character of Mildred is the most glaring example of rebellious spirit in Of Human Bondage. Lastly, sex and money play a vital role under economic bondage.

The spirit of a man or woman is certainly very powerful. If it is not appeared, it turns violet and rebellious. The same idea is very clearly and effectively illustrated by Somerset Maugham in his great book, Of Human Bondage .The character of Philip in the book is an important example, he cannot marry Mildred or Miss Wilkinson, and so he is compelled to marry Sally in haste towards the end of the story of the novel. Read More Novel After medical student Philip Carey falls in love with a vulgar waitress named Mildred Rogers, she breaks his heart again and again. Mildred cannot marry Philip because her spirit is ever in a rebellion form. Carey has a deformed foot, and Mildred tells him she could never love a “cripple.” She runs off with a salesman, then with one of Carey’s classmates.

Lastly, Somerset Maugham points out ‘the economic bondage’ which is basically related with sex, or money. Read More Modern Period Money which is also needed for the satisfaction of sexual instinct plays a highly significant role in human life. The want of money leads to ‘economic bondage’ which is the roof of numerous evils.

Some examples may be cited from Somerset Maugham’s novel. The Englishman who used to teach Philip lives shabbily because he was very poor. His income was needed only for his bread and butter. Read More Novel Mildred took to prostitution after her daughter’s death because of financial limitations, or ‘economic bondage’. Fanny Price died of hunger. Such bondage leads to many evils.

 Truly, Somerset Maugham’s Of Human Bondage not only discusses the ‘spirit-bondage’ and ‘economic bondage’ but also states that human life is never free from different kinds of ‘Bondage’.

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