Meaning of The Burden of Human Passions by Maugham

Analysis of the meaning of the novel “The Burden of Human Passions” by Maugham or the biography of an ordinary person. There are books that you want to re-read every year or mentally return to what you read, but there are just your favorite works, a piece of which will forever remain in your memory.

The novel The Burden of Human Passions does not fit into any of the categories described above, because it is sometimes physically difficult to follow the characters in their hopeless situation.

Today we will briefly analyze the plot, characters and meaning of Somerset Maugham’s work. So sit back, it will be interesting!

Plot Summary

Maugham "The burden of human passions"

It’s just not possible to tell a lot about the plot, since we have before us the biography of a simple person with his earthly and mortal passions. The character just grows, becomes a young man, and then comes to final maturity.

In the course of his life, he loves, betrays, suffers humiliation, thinks and makes mistakes. It is “thinking” that is of great importance here. However, if you literally retell the entire plot, it will turn out insipid, comical and at the same time rather boring.


The main character of the novel is a young man named Philip. On his way during the novel, a large number of people appear and disappear. As in real life, everyone brings something into his life for an owl, and then either stays or goes home.

It cannot be said that Philip had to worry on his life path, no, I was him, and I felt almost the same as he did. It is not entirely clear how Maugham managed to describe the character in such detail, realistically and reliably, but the fact remains.

It is noteworthy that the author showed no less attention and care to all his minor characters. It is really pleasant and interesting to watch them, and to see how their life changes depending on external conditions.


It cannot be said that I fully understood all the meanings that Somerset put into his work. Perhaps it is a stupid job to look for something that was not there in the first place. And yet it is more pleasant to believe that you are at the origins of solving something important.

The book The burden of human passions

The novel “The Burden of Human Passions” teaches us that we should not be afraid to make a choice, set ourselves goals and try to achieve them. Everyone weaves his own pattern on the carpet of life, and no one should interfere in this process. However, life is such that people around come and go, sometimes confusing the cards.

Therefore, Maugham also wanted to say that in life it is worth trying different things, but in the process of this “staying” one should not forget about responsibility for one’s actions, decisions, or lack thereof.

Somerset also wants to tell us that only a person who has tasted life can say at the end of it that he has lived it. If you constantly close yourself from the outside world in your shell, like a chicken, then this is how you will go to another world.

This concludes our analysis. If you have any questions or suggestions, be sure to write them in the comments. And we have prepared several other reviews for you. Here they are:

How did Sienkiewicz’s novel “Kamo Gryadeshi” end or how the Poles wrote about Antiquity

The meaning of the book “The Mysterious Case of Billy Milligan” or how multiple personalities can save you from prison

How did the novel “Misery” by Stephen King end or how a savior can easily turn into a sadistic maniac

And that’s all we have. So have a peaceful sky over your head and see you soon on the pages of new articles!

Add a comment