Huckleberry Finn, Anna Karenina, Harry Potter, Hester Prynne...these are just a handful of remarkable characters to be found in literature, but of course, the list of memorable characters is virtually endless! But why ponder which of these creations are the greatest? More than just a topic to debate with friends, the greatest characters from fiction help readers comprehend history, culture, politics, and even their own place in today's world. Despite our reliance on television, film, and technology, it is literature's great characters that create and reinforce popular culture, informing us again and again about society and ourselves. In The 100 Greatest Literary Characters, three scholars of literature identify the most significant figures in fiction published over the last several centuries. From Jay Gatsby to Jean Valjean, the characters profiled here represent a wide array of storytelling, and the authors explore each one's significance at the time they were created as well as their relevance today. Included in this volume are characters from literature produced around the world, such as Aladdin, James Bond, Holden Caulfield, Hercule Poirot, Don Quixote, Lisbeth Salander, Ebenezer Scrooge, and Yuri Zhivago. Readers of this volume will find their beloved literary figures, learn about forgotten gems, or discover deserving choices pulled from history's dustbin. Providing insights into how literature shapes and molds culture via these fabricated figures, The 100 Greatest Literary Characters will appeal to literature lovers around the globe.
Introduction Captain Ahab Aladdin Alex Alice in Wonderland Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom Brett Ashley George F. Babbitt Frodo Baggins Lily Bart Big Brother Mary Katherine Blackwood Molly Bloom James Bond Philbert Bono Emma Bovary Jean Brodie Aureliano Buendia Nathaniel "Natty" Bumppo Cacciato Holden Caulfield Celie Charlotte Benjy Compson Don Vito Corleone Janie Crawford Clarissa Dalloway Mr. Darcy Pilate Dead Rebecca de Winter Dracula Tess Durbeyfield Tyler Durden Katniss Everdeen Jane Eyre Atticus Finch Huckleberry Finn Henry Fleming Frankenstein's Creature Dorothy Gale T. S. Garp Jay Gatsby Holly Golightly Miss Havisham Eugene Henderson Sherlock Holmes Humbert Humbert Invisible Man Henry Jekyll / Edward Hyde Ma Joad Anna Karenina Mick Kelly Kurtz Josephine "Jo" March Philip Marlowe Jane Marple Oskar Matzerath Merlin Meursault The Misfit Guy Montag Dean Moriarty Offred Katherine Scarlett O'Hara Orlando Papa (The Man) Peter Pan Piggy Billy Pilgrim Fleur Pillager Hercule Poirot Edna Pontellier Alexander Portnoy Harry Potter Hester Prynne Quasimodo Don Quixote Rodion Romanovich Raskolnikov Ignatius J. Reilly Reno Lisbeth Salander Santiago Ebenezer Scrooge Sethe Tristram Shandy Shane Antonia Shimerda Long John Silver Lennie Small Sonny Julien Sorel Willie Stark Daenerys Targaryen Tarzan Oliver Twist Jean Valjean Oscar Wao Carrie White Winnie-the-Pooh John Yossarian Yuri Zhivago Appendix: Top Ten Character List Index About the Authors