My Cousin Rachel Themes & Motifs

This Study Guide consists of approximately 72 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of My Cousin Rachel.
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Nature of Good and Evil

Du Maurier explores what makes a person good or evil in order to deepen the mystery around Rachel and make readers question what Rachel's true motives are. Throughout the novel, readers are led to believe that Rachel is in England for nefarious purposes. Even before readers meet Rachel, the author hints that she is a woman capable of evil as great as murdering her husband. Philip takes the letters that he receives from Ambrose to literally mean that Rachel has done something to harm him, though Ambrose does not specifically say in the letters what is going on, only that Rachel may be his undoing. When Philip discovers that Ambrose has died, he decides that Rachel has poisoned his beloved cousin. However, the author makes readers—and Philip, too—doubt that she is evil when she arrives in England and claims to...

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This section contains 2,918 words
(approx. 8 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the My Cousin Rachel Study Guide
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