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Unformatted text preview: At the age of ten, young Emil Sinclair begins to become aware of a division in the world into light and dark, and good and evil. Critics have traced the source of Hesse's choice for his protagonist's name to Isaac von Sinclair, who was a friend of Holderlin. Others have pointed out, additionally, that the name is of further importance symbolically because it is an Anglo-French compound with the first syllable "sin" meaning dark, and the last syllable "clair" meaning light. Thus the awareness of a dichotomized world by a young boy who is going to come to grips with it and whose name represents it is an appropriate beginning for the novel. To young Emil Sinclair, the world of light is epitomized by his home, his family, and their customs and traditions. The dark world borders and even overlaps his world with servant girls, ghost stories, and traditions....
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- Spring '08