The Way of All Flesh (Dover Thrift Editions)

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9780486434667: The Way of All Flesh (Dover Thrift Editions)
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Written between 1873 and 1884 and published posthumously in 1903, The Way of All Flesh is regarded by some as the first twentieth-century novel. Samuel Butler's autobiographical account of a harsh upbringing and troubled adulthood shines an iconoclastic light on the hypocrisy of a Victorian clerical family's domestic life. It also foreshadows the crumbling of nineteenth-century bourgeois ideals in the aftermath of the First World War, as well as the ways in which succeeding generations have questioned conventional values.
Hailed by George Bernard Shaw as "one of the summits of human achievement," this chronicle of the life and loves of Ernest Pontifex spans four generations, focusing chiefly on the relationship between Ernest and his father, Theobald. Written in the wake of Darwin's Origin of Species, it reflects the dawning consciousness of heredity and environment as determinants of character. Along the way, it offers a powerfully satirical indictment of Victorian England's major institutions—the family, the church, and the rigidly hierarchical class structure.

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From the Publisher:

Founded in 1906 by J.M. Dent, the Everyman Library has always tried to make the best books ever written available to the greatest number of people at the lowest possible price. Unique editorial features that help Everyman Paperback Classics stand out from the crowd include: a leading scholar or literary critic's introduction to the text, a biography of the author, a chronology of her or his life and times, a historical selection of criticism, and a concise plot summary. All books published since 1993 have also been completely restyled: all type has been reset, to offer a clarity and ease of reading unique among editions of the classics; a vibrant, full-color cover design now complements these great texts with beautiful contemporary works of art. But the best feature must be Everyman's uniquely low price. Each Everyman title offers these extensive materials at a price that competes with the most inexpensive editions on the market-but Everyman Paperbacks have durable binding, quality paper, and the highest editorial and scholarly standards.

From the Inside Flap:

The Way of All Flesh is one of the time-bombs of literature," said V. S. Pritchett. "One thinks of it lying in Samuel Butler's desk for thirty years, waiting to blow up the Victorian family and with it the whole great pillared and balustraded edifice of the Victorian novel."
Written between 1873 and 1884 but not published until 1903, a year after Butler's death, his marvelously uninhibited satire savages Victorian bourgeois values as personified by multiple generations of the Pontifex family. A thinly veiled account of his own upbringing in the bosom of a God-fearing Christian family, Butler's scathingly funny depiction of the self-righteous hypocrisy underlying nineteenth-century domestic life was hailed by George Bernard Shaw as "one of the summits of human achievement."
"If the house caught on fire, the Victorian novel I would rescue from the flames would be The Way of All Flesh," wrote William Maxwell in The New Yorker. "It is read, I believe, mostly by the young, bent on making out a case against their elders, but Butler was fifty when he stopped working on it, and no reader much under that age is likely to appreciate the full beauty of its horrors. . . . Every contemporary novelist with a developed sense of irony is probably in some measure, directly or indirectly, indebted to Butler, who had the misfortune to be a twentieth-century man born in the year 1835."

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Book Description Dover Publications Inc., United States, 2004. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Written between 1873 and 1884 and published posthumously in 1903, The Way of All Flesh is regarded by some as the first twentieth-century novel. Samuel Butler s autobiographical account of a harsh upbringing and troubled adulthood shines an iconoclastic light on the hypocrisy of a Victorian clerical family s domestic life. It also foreshadows the crumbling of nineteenth-century bourgeois ideals in the aftermath of the First World War, as well as the ways in which succeeding generations have questioned conventional values. Hailed by George Bernard Shaw as one of the summits of human achievement, this chronicle of the life and loves of Ernest Pontifex spans four generations, focusing chiefly on the relationship between Ernest and his father, Theobald. Written in the wake of Darwin s Origin of Species, it reflects the dawning consciousness of heredity and environment as determinants of character. Along the way, it offers a powerfully satirical indictment of Victorian England s major institutions--the family, the church, and the rigidly hierarchical class structure. Seller Inventory # AAC9780486434667

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Book Description Dover Publications Inc., United States, 2004. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Written between 1873 and 1884 and published posthumously in 1903, The Way of All Flesh is regarded by some as the first twentieth-century novel. Samuel Butler s autobiographical account of a harsh upbringing and troubled adulthood shines an iconoclastic light on the hypocrisy of a Victorian clerical family s domestic life. It also foreshadows the crumbling of nineteenth-century bourgeois ideals in the aftermath of the First World War, as well as the ways in which succeeding generations have questioned conventional values. Hailed by George Bernard Shaw as one of the summits of human achievement, this chronicle of the life and loves of Ernest Pontifex spans four generations, focusing chiefly on the relationship between Ernest and his father, Theobald. Written in the wake of Darwin s Origin of Species, it reflects the dawning consciousness of heredity and environment as determinants of character. Along the way, it offers a powerfully satirical indictment of Victorian England s major institutions--the family, the church, and the rigidly hierarchical class structure. Seller Inventory # AAC9780486434667

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