Balzac, Literary Sociologist by Allan H. Pasco

By Allan H. Pasco

Melding the fields of literature, sociology, and heritage, this e-book develops analyses of the 10 novels in Balzac's Scènes de los angeles vie de province. Following the order of the novels projected in La Comédie humaine, Allan H. Pasco investigates how Balzac used paintings as a device of social inquiry to procure startlingly exact insights into the relationships that outlined his turbulent society. His repeated declare to be an "historian of manners" was once greater than an empty boast. although Balzac used to be firstly an outstanding novelist, he was once additionally a trailblazing sociologist, becoming a member of Henri de Saint-Simon and the following Auguste Comte in contemplating the relationships that characterize society as an interacting, interlocking internet. utilizing a technique that mixes shut research with a vast cultural context, Pasco demonstrates that Balzac's sociological imaginative and prescient was once terribly pertinent to either his and our days.

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They are particularly important, since they introduce and give life to a number of Balzac’s most significant literary and sociological ideas that he further fleshed out in his encompassing masterpiece, La Comédie humaine. In short, while considering ten novels in detail, in hopes of opening their significance further, I want both to insist on the careful order that the author chose for a major segment of his masterpiece and to show how his sociology, while predating the invention of the word, considered the connections linking the various aspects of his world and the specific, nuclear, generative concepts at the center of the systems or structures holding his society together.

Letter of 17 February 1830, L’Europe de 1830, vue à travers la correspondance d’Augustin Pyramus de Condolle et Mme de Circourt, ed. Roger Pyramus de Candolle (Genève: Jullien, 1966) 64. 42. This aspect of Balzac’s vision was introduced in, Pasco, “Image Structure in Le Père Goriot,” French Forum 7 (1982): 224–34, and expanded in, Pasco, Balzacian Montage: Configuring La Comédie humaine (Toronto: U of Toronto P, 1991) 22–47. 43. Hippolyte Taine, “Balzac,” Nouveaux Essais de critique et d’histoire, 4th ed.

340–41. 10. , “Préface,” Lettres trouvées dans les portefeuilles d’émigrés, 1793, by Isabelle de Charrière (Paris: Femmes, 1993) 14. Richard Cobb discusses the issue of personal safety: Reactions to the French Revolution (London: Oxford UP, 1972) 14, 125–79, as does Georges Lefebvre, The French Revolution, vol. 2, tran. John Hall Stewart and James Friguglietti (New York: Columbia UP, 1964) 205, 271. 11. Roger Chartier, The Cultural Origins of the French Revolution, tran.  Cochrane (Durham: Duke UP, 1991) 136.

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