Books used:The Inferno of Dante, Last Call, Howl;s Moving CastleAlthough each is slightly different, The Inferno of Dante, Last Call, and Howl’s Moving Castle all have a common theme of how fate is determined in people’s lives.In The Inferno of Dante, fate depends on the way one behaves on earth, and by the outside omnipotent force of God.
In Last Call, a person’s fate depends on what position a person is born into, and on other people’s actions as well.In Howl’s Moving Castle, the reader is led to believe that fate is determined by what position of the family one is born into.However, in the end, Sophie, the main character proves to herself that fate can only be determined by the choices one makes, not by the position one is born into.The Inferno of Dante is the first example of one way of how fate is determined in people’s lives.In this novel, a person’s fate is determined by their worst sin committed on Earth, and also by the outside forces of God.Throughout the novel, the journey through hell of Virgil and Dante shows the significance of God’s grace and how it affects not only the living, but the deceased as well.
During his trip through hell, the character of Dante witnesses God’s justice and its true perfection in each ring of hell.Every sinner is punished in the same nature as their sins.Virgil and Dante come across many evildoers who are trapped in the personification of their own sinful personalities.Their tortures are extreme versions of their sins on earth.Dante the poet places his own moral standards within the novel by portraying a hierarchy of evil that corresponds with his disapproval of the sin.As the pair of observers descends farther and farther into the pits of Hell, the sins become more and more treacherous, and the punishments they see grow worse and worse.While the evil in the first layers of Hell is simple, sometimes invoking pity in Dante, the deeper into Hell that they travel, the punishment of the souls grows worse for more complex and condemnable sins.Dante the poet is able to bring out pity and hate in the reader as well as supply a given example of what his idea of the after life is.
The Inferno of Dante is a novel which shows how fate is predetermined by actions on Earth, and by God’s justification for human punishments.By placing the sinners in different rings of hell, with each becoming more treacherous, Dante the poet was able to show how justice was a main factor in assigning punishment to the sinners.Dante also portrayed each circle of hell and the sinners that were contained in it very horrifically.By using vivid descriptions and by choosing a literary style to match the detail, Dante depicts life after death for humans as scary, and almost awful.
Dante showed the reader his idea of cultural values by showing justice as the main key for determination of punishments for sins.This clearly portrayed his religious focus and beliefs. The sinners all were trapped in hell with a punishment that was the personification of their sins, further showing the justification in their punishments.For example, in the fourth circle of hell, the avaricious and prodigal (greedy and depressed) sinners were contained.
The avaricious were the people who couldn’t control their spending.The prodigal were depressed, and focused on themselves too much.Both were greedy in their own ways, and their punishment was a joint punishment, where one side must shove their material wealth against the other side. When they met, ;one side screamed, ‘Why hoard?’ the other side, ‘Why waste?’; (Line 30).Dante also expressed his cultural values by using specific Italian government officials as examples of the people suffering in hell.For example, the mentioning of Pier Delle Vigne, the chief counselor of Frederick II of Sicily, is found in Canto XIII.This Canto takes place in the forest of suicide.In his previous life Pier killed himself after being accused of treachery, thus placing him in the seventh circle of hell, the City of Dis.Dante was an exile, which may have been the cause for his constant reference to the Italian government officials rotting in the different circles of hell.This novel, unlike the other two, had a direct mention of cultural values and specific people from this culture.Another example of how fate is determined in people’s lives is the novel Last Call, by Tim Powers.Fate is determined by what position a person is born into, as well as the help that the characters receive from one another.Powers uses archetypes to show the doubling of characters in both worlds, and how each affects the other’s fate.Throughout the novel, Scott, Ozzie, and Diana, the main characters, use gambling, cards, and magic to tell them what their fortune is going to be..