Flaubert: A Biography

Brown, Frederick

Published by Little, Brown and Company, 2006
ISBN 10: 0316118788 / ISBN 13: 9780316118781
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Synopsis: From the highly acclaimed author of Zola: A Life comes the definitive biography of Gustave Flaubert, author of Madame Bovary.Gustave Flaubert (1821-1880), whose Madame Bovary outraged the right-thinking bourgeoisie, is now brought to life as the singular person and artist he was. As Frederick Brown reveals, Flaubert was fraught with contradiction--a sedentary man who took epic voyages through Egypt and the Middle East; a man of genius who could be flamboyantly uncouth, but was fanatically devoted to beautifully cadenced prose. While making much of his camaraderie with male friends, Flaubert depended upon the emotional nurture of maternal women, notably George Sand, with whom he engaged in a justly celebrated correspondence. His assorted mistresses--French, Egyptian, and English--fed both his richly erotic imagination and his fictional characters, and his letters provide a record of them.Flaubert's time and place literally put him on trial for portraying lewd behavior in Madame Bovary. His milieu also made him a celebrity and, indirectly, brought about his financial ruin. Flaubert died suddenly at the age of fifty-nine, and soon afterward, his beloved retreat near Rouen was torn down and converted into a distillery to cover his niece's debts. He privately dreamed of popular success, which he in fact achieved with Madame Bovary, but never sacrificed to it his ideal of artistic integrity. Frederick Brown's magisterial biography honors his subject's life, times, and legacy.

About the Author: Frederick Brown is the author of An Impersonation of Angels: A Biography of Jean Cocteau; Père-Lachaise, Theater and Revolution; and Zola: A Life. Twice the recipient of both Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships, he lives in New York City.

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Title: Flaubert: A Biography
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication Date: 2006
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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