Positivity and Optimism in the works of Paulo Coelho


Yogesh Sarathe

Research scholar, Rani Durgavati Vishwavidyalaya, Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh India

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Paulo Coelho is a renowned Brazilian writier.  Second reason is the reason is based on optimism of the writer.  He also wrote columns for newspapers and wrote poems and articles. Though his first novel, Hell Archives, published back in 1982, he got recognition from his novel “The Alchemist” internationally.  This novel later on became the Bestseller internationally. His other famous works are Brida, The Witch of Portobello, and The Fifth Mountain.  Many researchers took interest in his writings and explored his novels in their perspective. His writings show that he was very positive and optimistic towards the life.  He was of the view that if you long for something in your life with determination and conviction you are bound to get your wishes fulfilled.


KEYWORDS: Optimism, Positivity, The Alchemist.




Though Paulo’s personal life was little difficult but he never gave up the hope of achieving big in his life.  Becoming a writer was his childhood dream but his parents were against his wish.  His mother was of the view that his father is an Engineer and has clear thought and vision for the world. His parents even sent him to mental institution for a while but Paulo never changed his mind and wanted to become writer.


Upon this strict behavior of his parents even he never had a bad or negative feeling about them. He was of the view that Even though his parents did not want him to chose his career or take decision, he says that his parents did not want to destroy him and they only want to save him, but they did not know what to do. He was even enrolled in a law school to stop him from becoming a writer but Paulo dropped out a year later and lived a life of hippie moving from one city to another in different parts of Europe and America.


The characters he portrayed in his novels and other works remain optimistic even in the toughest situations. These characters never seem to lose hope and never give up and the result is that the situation changes with time and they achieve what they strive for.


In his novel in the, “The Alchemist” he delivered a very impressive message of optimism and hope through the character of Santiago. Santiago is a young boy who is shepherd who wants to explore the world in order to fulfill his destiny and goal. On his way he faces various tribulations and challenges but he doesn’t lose hope and gets whatever he desires.


In “The Fifth Mountain” there is a young man Elijah who left his homeland and his relatives in order to achieve his aim. On his way he faces various trials he lose he near and dear one’s people turned against him but he never lose hope and at the end he succeeded in his goal.


“Brida”is a story of a young charming girl who set out his journey in order to learn magical powers. She wants to learn magic for the sake of true meaning of her life. In this way she faces various problems but she doesn’t lose hope and at the end she gets her aim.” Sattar, P.3)

As per Sattar, whatever character you explore you will find some kind of positivity and optimism in those characters. They are not going to give up easily. The same is the case with the protagonist of the novel “The Alchemist”. He never loses hope and explores the world to achieve his dreams and desires. In the path he faces many challenges and struggles a lot to fulfill his dreams, he keeps hope.


In another novel, The Fifth Mountain, the protagonist Elijah loses everything. Elijah lives in Israel and he is a prophet. As the time goes by and circumstances change and he has to run from his country and had to take shelter in a city called Akbar. He lives there with the help of a widow and recollects himself. He is a prophet and a messenger of the god so got helped by angels. As the years passed by, he comes back to Israel and reestablishes the city and his religion.



The works of Paulo Coelho gives the message of optimism. Life is tough. Sad and happy moments are the parts of life. Life never gives a person only one color. It’s full of grey, black and white shades. His quotations even motivate people. He states that If you only walk on sunny days, you will never reach your destination. This single sentence a meaning to life. One must walk through all walks of life without caring if the path is patchy or clean to reach one’s destination. He also states that it is the fear of failure which stops people to achieve their dreams. Once they overcome this fear and ready to accept their failure there is no stopping.



Ricaurte-Quijano, P. and Carli-Álvarez, A. (2016). The Wiki Learning Project: Wikipedia as an Open Learning Environment. Comunicar, 24(49), pp.61-69. Available at:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paulo_Coelho.

Sattar, B., and M. J. Anwar. “Paulo Coelho as an Optimistic Writer”. IJOHMN (International Journal Online of Humanities), Vol. 4, no. 3, June 2018, p. 10. Available at:

 http://www.ijohmn.com/index.php/ijohmn/article/view/48/. Date accessed: 05 Dec. 2018. doi:10.24113/ijohmn.v4i3.48.








Received on 18.07.2019         Modified on 31.07.2019

Accepted on 12.08.2019      ©A&V Publications All right reserved

Res.  J. Humanities and Social Sciences. 2019; 10(3):805-806.

DOI: 10.5958/2321-5828.2019.00132.3