The Razor's Edge Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 56 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Razor's Edge.
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As in his other works, Maugham develops the existential theme of characters attempting to make their lives meaningful in a meaningless world. In The Razor's Edge, the protagonist Larry Darrell forsakes wealth, security, and personal relationships to seek a spiritual meaning in life. Traveling to India, he finds it in the Hindu religion — in the belief in transmigration of souls and in a highly personal mystical experience. When he returns to America, having given up his annuity, he is content to accept the life of an ordinary workingman.

Other characters seek meaning in different ways. Elliott Templeton, a wealthy art collector and consummate snob, remains true to his standards and his Catholic faith and dies in peace.

Buffeted by the depression, Gray and Isabel Maturin find a new start in business and a comfortable social niche in Dallas. Only Sophie Macdonald leads a self-destructive existence that ends in...

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This section contains 162 words
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