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Flaubert and Madame Bovary: A Double Portrait

Francis Steegmuller


  • Paperback
    $38.04
PUBLISHED: 30th November 2004
ISBN: 9781590171165
ANNOTATION:
Francis Steegmuller's beautifully executed double portrait of Madame Bovary and her maker is a remarkable and unusual biographical study, a sensitive and detailed account of how an unpromising young man turns himself into one of the world's greatest novelists. Steegmuller starts with the young Flaubert, prone to mysterious fits, hypochondriacal, at odds with and yet dependent on his bourgeois family. Then, drawing on Flaubert's voluminous correspondence, Steegmuller tracks his subject through friendships and love affairs, a trip to the Orient, nervous breakdown and tenuous recovery, and finally into the study, where a mind at once restless and jaded finds a focus in the precisely detailed reality of an imagined woman, utterly ordinary in her unhappiness, whose story was to revolutionize literature.
Flaubert and Madame Bovary: A Double Portrait
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  • Paperback
    $38.04
PUBLISHED: 30th November 2004
ISBN: 9781590171165
ANNOTATION:
Francis Steegmuller's beautifully executed double portrait of Madame Bovary and her maker is a remarkable and unusual biographical study, a sensitive and detailed account of how an unpromising young man turns himself into one of the world's greatest novelists. Steegmuller starts with the young Flaubert, prone to mysterious fits, hypochondriacal, at odds with and yet dependent on his bourgeois family. Then, drawing on Flaubert's voluminous correspondence, Steegmuller tracks his subject through friendships and love affairs, a trip to the Orient, nervous breakdown and tenuous recovery, and finally into the study, where a mind at once restless and jaded finds a focus in the precisely detailed reality of an imagined woman, utterly ordinary in her unhappiness, whose story was to revolutionize literature.

Annotation

Francis Steegmuller's beautifully executed double portrait of Madame Bovary and her maker is a remarkable and unusual biographical study, a sensitive and detailed account of how an unpromising young man turns himself into one of the world's greatest novelists. Steegmuller starts with the young Flaubert, prone to mysterious fits, hypochondriacal, at odds with and yet dependent on his bourgeois family. Then, drawing on Flaubert's voluminous correspondence, Steegmuller tracks his subject through friendships and love affairs, a trip to the Orient, nervous breakdown and tenuous recovery, and finally into the study, where a mind at once restless and jaded finds a focus in the precisely detailed reality of an imagined woman, utterly ordinary in her unhappiness, whose story was to revolutionize literature.

Publisher Description

Francis Steegmuller's beautifully executed double portrait of Madame Bovary and her maker is a remarkable and unusual biographical study, a sensitive and detailed account of how an unpromising young man turns himself into one of the world's greatest novelists. Steegmuller starts with the young Flaubert, prone to mysterious fits, hypochondriacal, at odds with and yet dependent on his bourgeois family. Then, drawing on Flaubert's voluminous correspondence, Steegmuller tracks his subject through friendships and love affairs, a trip to the Orient, nervous breakdown and tenuous recovery, and finally into the study, where a mind at once restless and jaded finds a focus in the precisely detailed reality of an imagined woman, utterly ordinary in her unhappiness, whose story was to revolutionize literature.

Author Biography

Francis Steegmuller is the author of more than twenty books and a recipient of numerous awards and honors. His translation of "Madame Bovary" is an acknowledged classic. In 1982 the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters awarded him its Gold Medal for Biography.

Review

"This is the best biography of a novelist I have come across." Anne Enright in O, The Oprah Magazine

"In his segregation of the relevant from a tempting superfluity of information Mr. Steegmuller shows himself a true biographer. In his delicate weaving together of these diverse strands into the single but complex theme of Madame Bovary's creation he shows himself a true artist." -- Philip Toynbee

"A most instructive, perspicacious and amusing portrait of the bear of Croisset, and the gifts of novelists and scholar have been married with unusual happiness in its production." -- V. S. Pritchett

"Flaubert and Madame Bovary can justly be called a brilliant achievement. Mr. Steegmuller is a superb stylist, and even were his study second-rate in other respects (which it is not), it would still be worth reading for the sheer perfection of its prose." -- Lewis Mumford

"Flaubert and Madame Bovary is an admirable accomplishment in research and thought, in the dramatic sense, and in a well-concealed virtuosity. It is fresh and illuminating. It is a piece of vividly interesting reading." -- Katherine Woods, The New York Times

Product Details

Author
Francis Steegmuller
Short Title
FLAUBERT & MADAME BOVARY
Pages
374
Publisher
New York Review of Books
Series
New York Review Books Classics
Language
English
ISBN-10
1590171160
ISBN-13
9781590171165
Media
Book
Format
Paperback
Year
2004
Publication Date
2004-11-30
Subtitle
A Double Portrait
Country of Publication
United States