“Tartuffe” – the recognized peak of Moliere’s creativity. In this comedy, ideological richness is happily combined with artistic perfection.
The characters deduced in it are remarkable. In the play there are almost no “auxiliary” characters with a conditional characteristic.
The main character, the hero of the comedy, is Tartuffe. It is in him embodied hateful to Moliere the figure of a hypocrite.
Tartuffe is depicted as a complete swindler, cleverly using naivete, the credulity of people, their belief that behind the outer holiness there is always a supreme virtue. From the outcome of the comedy, we learn that Tartuffe is not even a prude, but a tramp with a criminal past. The mask of hypocrisy is worn by him for the performance of another platoon, the victim of which is to be Orgon.
Moliere denounces hypocrisy, showing that it is the instrument of crime, against which the naive holiness is defenseless. To make the satire
bright, beating at the target, accessible, not requiring a clue. Moliere did not spare the paints to paint the true face of Tartuffe. This greedy, rude and predatory rogue.
Throughout the whole comedy there are as it were two Tartuffe. One is greedy, greedy, voluptuous, unscrupulous rascal. The other is his mask: a hypocrite who has mastered all manners, all the jargon of churchmen who fooled the simpletons. And the satire of Moliere is directed not so much against the frank deception of Tartuffe the swindler, but against the hypocrisy that he has learned, Moliere shows what the mask of piety serves. Conscience and hypocrisy are incompatible things.
Comedy Moliere denounced the vapidity of church morality.
“Tartuffe” is rightly considered the best comedy of Moliere. Impressive power of her consisted in the vitality of the unmasked vice.
Tartuffe beat directly on the worst enemies of Moliere – religious hypocrites. But the generalizing force of art gave this type a wider meaning. It was not for nothing that Tartuffe’s name entered the language, like the shameful nickname
of every hypocrite who covers false motives with false virtue.
The second episode of the comedy is connected with the mockery of the rich pretentious bourgeois who gained strength in the class-based French society, and with the attack against the estate of the nobility in the face of a rapidly degraded aristocracy.
“The philistine in the nobility” – a sample of “funny” comedy. As in many other plays by Moliere, the main attention is paid to the central character, Mr. Jourdain.
This innocent and narrow-minded rich philistine has been blinded by his only passion: to become a nobleman. For the sake of this he submissively undergoes “education” in order to accept the manners of the Marquises and trusts in every way the scoundrel from the impoverished counts Dorant, who enjoys the credulity of Jourdain for obvious mercenary purposes.
Moliere’s creativity was nourished by many origins: classicism, ancient drama, folk carnival-farce culture, Renaissance and Baroque art.