The Identity of the Master in Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita" Term Paper

The Identity of the Master in Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita"
An interpretation of Mikhail Bulgakov's novel "The Master and Margarita" from a psychological point of view.
# 154042 | 6,199 words | 21 sources | 2014 | CA
Published by on Oct 23, 2014 in Literature (Russian)


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From the Paper:

"This paper makes the case that Mikhail Bulgakov's masterpiece, The Master and Margarita, should be read as an allegory in which the Master represents the Russian people as a whole. It is argued that the key to understanding the novel as an allegory is the epigraph taken from Goethe's Faust regarding the relationship of good and evil. After reviewing the various interpretations given to the novel by critical scholarship and providing an overview of the plot, the paper presents an alternative reading that draws upon psychological theory, particularly that of Carl Jung, who spoke of integrating the Shadow, which was his term for the rejected and repressed parts of the self. The paper points to the Gnostic underpinnings of the novel and to Bulgakov's Gnostic understanding of the relationship between good and evil, which conceives of good and evil and complementary forces that work together. Citing evidence from the novel, the paper fleshes out the details of the allegory, identifying the various characters in the novel and what they represent in the allegory. It notes that all the characters in the novel except Margarita and Yeshua make a split between good and evil and identify with either one side or the other. The resolution in the plot, then, is the healing of the spilt and the reconciliation of good and evil (or the integration of the shadow), which the Master eventually accomplishes with the help of Margarita, and which is represented at the end of the novel in the image of Pilate and Yeshua walking together along a moonlit path. The paper concludes with the observation that the Russian people (as represented by the Master in the novel) eventually achieved this reconciliation with the collapse of Communism, and in this sense the novel is perhaps a sort of prophecy."

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The Identity of the Master in Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita" (2014, October 23) Retrieved June 26, 2019, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-identity-of-the-master-in-bulgakov-the-master-and-margarita-154042/

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"The Identity of the Master in Bulgakov's "The Master and Margarita"" 23 October 2014. Web. 26 June. 2019. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/the-identity-of-the-master-in-bulgakov-the-master-and-margarita-154042/>

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