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Émile Zola: A Very Short Introduction

Brian Nelson

July 2020

ISBN: 9780198837565

160 pages
Paperback
174x111mm

In Stock

Very Short Introductions

Price: £8.99

Émile Zola occupies a distinctive place in the great tradition of French realist fiction. Brian Nelson introduces this quintessential novelist of modernity, and explores his fascination with change, and the way he opened the novel up to new areas of representation: the realities of working-class life, class relations, and sexuality and the body.

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Description

Émile Zola occupies a distinctive place in the great tradition of French realist fiction. Brian Nelson introduces this quintessential novelist of modernity, and explores his fascination with change, and the way he opened the novel up to new areas of representation: the realities of working-class life, class relations, and sexuality and the body.

  • Examines Émile Zola's distinctive place in the history of the European novel
  • Explores how Zola opened the novel up to a new realm of subjects and how his work embodies a new freedom of expression in their depiction
  • Situates Zola's work in its social and political contexts
  • Considers Zola's art criticism, and his role in the Dreyfus Affair, as well as his fiction
  • Part of the Very Short introductions series - over ten million copies sold worldwide

About the Author(s)

Brian Nelson, Monash University

Brian Nelson is Emeritus Professor of French and Translation Studies at Monash University, Melbourne, and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. His publications include The Cambridge Introduction to French Literature, The Cambridge Companion to Zola, Zola and the Bourgeoisie, and translations, for Oxford World's Classics, of Zola's His Excellency Eugène Rougon, Earth (with Julie Rose), The Fortune of the Rougons, The Belly of Paris, The Kill, Pot Luck and The Ladies' Paradise. He has also translated Swann in Love by Marcel Proust.

Table of Contents

    Acknowledgements
    List of illustrations
    Introduction
    1 Zola and the art of fiction
    2 Before the Rougon-Macquart
    3 The fat and the thin: The Belly of Paris
    4 'A work of truth': L'Assommoir
    5 The man-eater: Nana
    6 The dream machine: The Ladies' Paradise
    7 Down the mine: Germinal
    8 The Great Mother: Earth
    9 After the Rougon-Macquart
    A chronology of Zola's life and works
    References
    Further reading

Reviews

"As an introduction to Zola's life and work, Nelson's little book cannot be faulted: it is grounded in a specialist's mastery of the field; it is completed by a reliable chronology; and its invitation to read further is supported by a bibliography listing major editions in French as well as critical studies in English which range from the accessible to the scholarly." - Robert Lethbridge, Journal of European Studies

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