Fifteen Dogs

Fifteen Dogs through a Philosophical Lens College

Once given human consciousness, Prince’s journey works to answer many philosophical questions regarding what it means to be human as well as what a ‘good life’ really means through André Alexis’ novel, Fifteen Dogs. Prince’s relationship with language forms almost immediately, showing the innate relationship with communication that all of existence has. Prince also begins questioning the world around him, demonstrating a desire for knowledge and the inability to articulate the answers. Prince’s poetry showcases his need to attempt and make sense of everything around him through the means of language. His poems work as a method to try and make sense of the senseless and ultimately shows the paradoxical nature of language and raises the question of whether or not language hinders or improves a life. Prince eventually does die and, in his death, shows what is important in living a full and happy life: love. Despite his misfortunes, Prince remains optimistic and never gives up hope. He gives nothing but love to the world and in the end, receives love in return, making him the only dog to die happy. Prince, in André Alexis’ Fifteen Dogs, answers many questions about the nature of existence throughout his life; his complex...

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