The Red and the Black by Stendhal

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Synopsis

Widely considered the masterpiece of the fascinating and mysterious man known as Stendahl, "The Red and the Black" is a two volume novel first published in 1830. It follows the ambitious desires of Julien Sorel, a young man raised in the French countryside who wishes to rise above his station and explore Paris and its society. Through a series of events, Julien's talent and hard work give way to deception and hypocrisy when he loses the will to believe in sincerity. Though he reaches many of his goals in Paris, Julien's calculating manner falls prey to his passions, and he commits a crime that leads to his downfall. Ultimately a flawed protagonist whose illusions are shattered in the face of a harsh reality, Stendahl allows readers to live in the minds of his characters in such a remarkable way that this work is considered as psychological as it is historical. "The Red and the Black" is satirical and prophetic for its time, and can perhaps be known as one of the first realist novels ever written.
 

About Stendhal

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Stendhal, born Henri Marie Beyle (1783-1842), had a post in the Ministry of War and followed Napoleon's campaigns before retiring to Italy. As Stendhal, he began writing on art, music, and travel. He later wrote novels, literary criticism, and various biographical and autobiographical works. Roger Gard was a reader in English at Queen Mary and Westfield College. He died in 2000.
 
Published June 24, 2010 by Neeland Media LLC. 314 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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