Anton Chekhov’s short story “The Bet” is fundamentally about the meaning of life, and this is the main theme of the story. Chekhov explores what that meaning might be, and in order to do so, he also explores other themes, such as crime and punishment, freedom and imprisonment, and loneliness and greed.
Greed can corrupt men. Because of a bet, a man decides to commit murder.
PART A: Which statement best expresses a theme in the story? Pursuing knowledge and bettering yourself is the best way to spend your time. The desire to prove to others that you’re right can lead to extreme actions. Greed and impulsive decisions can lead to huge consequences.
Through distinct symbolism and pernicious conflict against one’s self, “The Bet” by Anton Chekhov depicts how manipulative greed can be a crippling trait towards impulsive young adults, sparking irrational actions.
During his 15 year confinement the lawyer learns that money, material possessions have no long term value. … He was willing to commit murder to save himself from having to pay the money. The banker has lost his connection with humanity over the course of the bet, now only placing value on money.
How does diction affect theme in a story the bet? It doesn’t affect theme at all because it has to do with language choice. It creates a struggle that advances the plot, which creates the theme. It affects the tone of the story, which affects how theme is communicated.
On the face of it, the banker wins the bet, because the lawyer leaves his cell five minutes before midnight—the time of his release—thereby violating the terms of the bet. In doing so, the lawyer lets go of the two million that would have been given to him had he stayed in his cell until the very last minute.
In the end of the story, “The Bet,” the lawyer despairs of life, and he reneges on the wager with banker. … In his hubris, the lawyer raises the bet that he can stay in isolation from five years to fifteen.
In Chekhov’s short story “The Bet,” the terms of the bet are that the lawyer will stay in prison for fifteen years and the banker will “wager two million” (92). While the lawyer is in prison, he can have no human contact, but he can have “anything necessary–books, music, wine–” and anything else he requests (92).
The banker won the bet because he initially said that the lawyer could not stay in solitary confinement for 15 years. In the end, the lawyer did not completes term of 15 years and ended up leaving without the money.
Books Symbol Analysis. The books that the lawyer reads symbolize his mental state and philosophical outlook, as his reading choices track his evolving views on the nature and value of human life.
By Anton Pavlovich Chekhov
Actually, we can only think of one (aside from all those books, of course): the letter that the lawyer writes renouncing the bet money. … The info in the letter shows there is no reason for the murder anymore, because it communicates the lawyer’s newfound belief system.
It symbolizes the bet itself since the key controls the playing field for the bet, and it symbolizes the banker’s control over the situation.
The main moral of the “The Bet” concerns the shallowness of material wealth, as one who is internally rich is not wishing for anything. A secondary theme is about the death penalty. Life imprisonment is portrayed as the better option to death, as the person has the time to develop character.
Because he had lost a lot of money in the past 15 years through gambling and the Stock Exchange, so giving the lawyer $2 million would ruin him.
The lawyer suffered severely from loneliness and depression. The sounds of his piano could be heard continually day and night from his lodge. He refused wine and tobacco.
How does the mood of a story affect the reader? It affects the reader’s interpretation of events.
The setting of “The Bet” is Russia in the late nineteenth century. Specifically, most of the story takes place in a lodge in the banker’s garden, where the lawyer must spend fifteen years in solitary confinement in order to win the bet.
The banker, for instance, gives the lawyer the opportunity to back out of the bet early in the story, which is evidence of his good-hearted nature, but his decision to murder the lawyer later on demonstrates his darker side. In this respect, Chekhov’s characters are realistic because they are well-rounded.
The banker and lawyer make the bet for the same reason that most people make a bet. They each believe that their opinion is right and best, and they are willing to risk something to prove it. The story starts with the narrator telling the reader that the banker had a friendly little social gathering.
The climax of “The Bet” is when the watchmen run in to the banker’s house with the news that the young man has escaped “out of the window” and disappeared beyond the garden gate. The climax certainly has an element of irony because the thought arises that he might have escaped “out of the window” fifteen years before.
Consequently, the lawyer will leave five hours early because he does not want the money. He determines that he is now wiser than the banker. The lawyer will deprive himself of what he thought he once wanted more than anything in the world.
To avoid arousing suspicion (that the banker might have killed or banished the lawyer), the banker keeps the lawyer’s letter in a fireproof box. Therefore, he would always have proof that the lawyer renounced the two million and voluntarily escaped from the lodge.
Anton Chekhov’s The Bet
The banker was a static character; he was greedy from start to finish. The lawyer was a dynamic character and he saw the wrong in his ways and changed them in the end. The author portrayed the banker as a foolish and greedy man, and since Chekhov characterized him as static, he never changed.
The banker felt that death penalty was better than life imprisonment. However, the lawyer said that if he had to choose, he would choose life imprisonment as he felt that it is better to live anyhow than to not live at all. This led to an argument, which transformed into a bet.
The terms of the bet are that the lawyer must live in isolation for fifteen years. At the end of that time, if he fulfills his bet of having no human contact for this period, the banker will pay him two million rubles. The bet arises out of an argument on which is crueler, the death penalty or life imprisonment.
Anton Chekhov’s “The Bet” focuses on a conflict between a banker and a young lawyer who enter into a disagreement at a party hosted by the banker. While the banker believes that capital punishment is more humane than life imprisonment, the lawyer claims that he would choose life imprisonment over a death sentence.
The prisoner, sleeping as the banker enters, has written a letter stating that the he will leave the room just five hours before completing the terms of the bet, thereby forfeiting his right to the fortune.
The Meaning of Life Theme Analysis. … Anton Chekhov’s “The Bet” sets up a seemingly simple bet about the nature and value of life. The banker, who believes that the death penalty is more humane and moral than life imprisonment, argues that experiences, pleasures, and relationships are what make life worth living.
The banker’s financial misfortune (dramatic irony)
It is ironic that the banker, who once capriciously bet the two million, later in the book comes to value them very highly.
The point of view of the story is third person limited omniscient. Foreshadowing plays an important part in the story since the narrator looks back fifteen years in the past to recall the establishing of the bet. Chekhov’s clever writing focuses not on the characters as much as the premise of the story.
So, while the lawyer tries to prove that living an isolated life is not a hardship and win the bet of two million, he can have any of the books he wants, he is given a piano and music, he is allowed to write letters, and he may drink wine and smoke.
The most astonishing part of the prisoner’s letter was his intent to leave his captivity five hours early and renounce the money he would have received.