The “Seagull’s” fate; Constantine’s fate

In the “Seagull”,  Chekhov by use of the seagull helps to bring to life the indicative nature of human beings.  The seagull which represents innocence and freedom is contrasted with the tarnish influence of a skewed representation of love.  The seagull is viewed  as being beautiful when it is in its element, flying free, uninterrupted by human involvement.   It is only when it is used as a tool to represent love, that its beauty dissipates.  Once Constantine shoots the seagull and Trigorin stuffs it, this results in the sealing of both Constantine and Nina’s fate.  The shooting of the bird by Constantine, is used by Chekhov as a foreshadowing for his ultimate fate, which results in him being the “seagull”. Constantine also foreshadows his demise by emphasizing that he will kill himself, the same way that he killed the seagull, which he eventually does.

Both Nina and Constantine can be see as pawns in the plot that helps to move the play along.  Constantine consistently has to compete with Trigorin to somehow prove that his work is substantial enough, to be viewed as being worthy.  Not to mention, vying for his mother’s approval, love and attention, and support.  Instead, he is constantly rewarded with ridicule and rejection.  When sharing different views about Trigorin, his mother states, ” There is nothing left for people with no talent and mighty pretensions to do but to criticize those who are really gifted”.   So no matter how how much attention Constantine’s writing is getting, this is not enough to sustain him.

In the end, however, both Nina and Constantine accept their fates in different ways.  Constantine seems to be in a state of no hope, loosing himself. ” I am still groping in a chaos of phantoms and dreams, not knowing whom and what end i am serving by it all”. Nina realizes her entrapment, and accepts it.  Whereas, Constantine on the other hand can no longer deal with the rejection of Nina not returning his love, which ends in death, and him ultimately taking his life, which he feels is his only means as being free.


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