Le Ventre de Paris

Le Ventre de Paris Part Of Emile Zola S Multigenerational Rougon Macquart Saga, The Belly Of Paris Is The Story Of Florent Quenu, A Wrongly Accused Man Who Escapes Imprisonment On Devil S Island Returning To His Native Paris, Florent Finds A City He Barely Recognizes, With Its Working Classes Displaced To Make Way For Broad Boulevards And Bourgeois Flats Living With His Brother S Family In The Newly Rebuilt Les Halles Market, Florent Is Soon Caught Up In A Dangerous Maelstrom Of Food And Politics Amid Intrigue Among The Market S Sellers The Fishmonger, The Charcutiere, The Fruit Girl, And The Cheese Vendor And The Glorious Culinary Bounty Of Their Labors, We See The Dramatic Difference Between Fat And Thin The Rich And The Poor And How The Widening Gulf Between Them Strains A City To The Breaking Point

mile Fran ois Zola was an influential French novelist, the most important example of the literary school of naturalism, and a major figure in the political liberalization of France.More than half of Zola s novels were part of a set of 20 books collectively known as Les Rougon Macquart Unlike Balzac who in the midst of his literary career resynthesized his work into La Com die Humaine, Zola from

❰Ebook❯ ➩ Le Ventre de Paris Author Émile Zola – Stockbag.info
  • Paperback
  • 660 pages
  • Le Ventre de Paris
  • Émile Zola
  • English
  • 01 February 2019
  • 9781933382722

10 thoughts on “Le Ventre de Paris

  1. says:

    The cover of this novel should come with a warning Well, may be not even just a warning, for it should be sold with a calorie counter I am afraid I may have put on several kilos while reading this Perhaps it would be advisable to read it while running on the treadmill The lush descriptions of succulent food could well activate and stimulate the production of a peculiar kind of literary enzymes which multiply by ten the energy provided by ingested food if it has been deliciously described.Warnings should go also for the vegetarians Or the sections dealing with raw meat on display, black pudding, lard and all kinds of sausages, could make them feel disgusted with Zola These ought to be marked and those who want their cholesterol the LDL kind somewhat high would be interested in giving it a pass The pescetarian types could instead go direct to the Fish pavilion and read and smell the bounty piscary Zola s account of the fish counter has the variety and range of an oceanic aquarium In all shapes and tints Flesh and Fish then If these victuals are often presented in opposition Zola exploits this by making it drive some aspects of the novel For the plot moves along the rivalry between the Butcher and Fishmonger ladies.Other people may prefer to move ahead and read the counter on cheeses and butters over and over again Never would I have thought that anyone would ever write such an Ode to the Cantals, Gruy res, Bries, Port Saluts, Roqueforts, Monts d Or, Neufch tels, of this world Sumptuous and delectable I certainly belong to that group, and if I could only put one update for this book, it would be this glorious passage But then, I am a lacto addict.And even if the book first pays attention to the vegetables, it may be of interest to leave that section to read at the end I always liked the French custom of eating salad at the end of meals I don t know why Zola did not follow this commendable habit here No matter, his vegetables sparkle like colourful jewels.But not everything is the food There is history too Although I have read a fair amount of Zola in the past, for its literary appeal, I was now drawn for its documentary value And I have not been disappointed This novel can be read as an intense social, economic and political document.Although published in 1873, when France had installed the Third Republic, the novel is set in the early years of the Second Empire when the population of Paris had doubled in just a few decades This was the time of the Haussmannization of the city, and amongst other projects, the Central Market of Paris was rebuilt in a structure of glass and steel pavilions to accommodate the provisioning of the city Balzac had already been fascinated by the logistics required for the supply of food for the daily consumption of Parisians And Zola followed Balzac s steps in this too Reading his Ventre de Paris one feels the compulsion to google all kinds of data relating to Les Halles of Victor Baltard 1805 1974.But what fascinated me the most during this read was Zola s exploration of the nature of substantiality and his blurring of the borderline separating the human from the material In some of his descriptions there is a symbiosis between the individual and the corporeality of her his world that goes beyond anthropomorphism Inevitably, I had to think of Arcimboldo s fantasies..For there is something Surreal in Zola s Naturalism.

  2. says:

    Zola leaves us with a timeless description of Les Halles as it was before the current 20y construction mess that it has become For several centuries, this area in the center of Paris was a thriving marketplace for all Parisians and this novel was a magnificent tribute to the various people that made their living here both for good and for not so good purposes It is an unforgettable story and for me perhaps the best book that Zola wrote.

  3. says:

    IntroductionTranslator s NoteSelect BibliographyA Chronology of mile Zola The Belly of Paris Explanatory Notes

  4. says:

    A gastronomic extravaganza for all carnivorous turophiles, the third novel in the Rougon Macquart series is an impeccably translated parleyvous into the prickly purlieus of mid 1800s Paree, starring big bosomed bitchy fishwives than a Shetlandic wharf The naive Florent is our luckless hero, plopped into the capital post wrongful imprisonment, a thin man caught up in a bustling bourgeois world of respectable market traders a coterie of carping chaffers keen to slap down the prosperous meat slinger Louise, who offers our hero shelter, lardons, and bouillies Plump in Zola s nutritive descriptions, from the fruit and veg stalls, the preparation of meat, the pungent whiffs of blood and rotten produce, the novel evokes the period with the same exquisite vividness as the superstores in The Ladies Paradise, or the backstage scents in Nana, and shows a world where the strong willed women wangle themselves a living as the men sit around and plot futile political revolutions One of Zola s finest.

  5. says:

    Zola gives us both sides of the famous food markets in Paris, the sublime to the disgusting, and sometimes in the space of one sentence of his flowing prose The descriptive passages are so visual they are like viewing paintings At times they seem to almost literally soar at the start of one chapter I felt as if I were flying above the rooftops of the city The vendors seem to become what they sell, from fish to flowers I was reminded of Dickens at several points, and Balzac at another.As much as I liked this novel, I felt its central conceit fell flat by the end.

  6. says:

    3.5 stars I was both glutted, and gutted, by this third novel in les Rougon Macquart series, for the book swings from utter starvation to a surfeit of every imaginable food It is Zola s intent to demonstrate the gluttony of state by juxtaposing it against the misery of the working poor in both cases, I became queasy with despair, for there is never a just answer to the injustice of life While the contrasts worked well in the broader context of outlining the inherent sins of the Second Empire, it did not work all that well in procuring enough sympathy for the right side for it seems Zola lost himself in the very descriptiveness of gluttony Rather than portraying it as a disease, he almost became the disease in an ironic twist of descriptive excess, revelling in the very lechery of his language Page after page after page of endless descriptions of food became the nausea of the book I found it to be quite a slog, at one point, and almost gave it up The irony not lost on me is that I should be reading this throughout the days of Lent Even as a recovering catholic, I feel the weight of the purple shroud on my shoulders at this time of year See what I mean Now I m doing it too indulging in the excess of language It s really such a weighty book, and leaves no room for the imagination Overcome by the sights and smells of Les Halles, I could not even summon the requisite sympathy for Florent, our hapless would be protagonist His story is overdone as well the luckless hero who walks right back into his own worst nightmare, pulled along by inertia than determination to seek true justice This character befuddled me utterly because he doesn t seem to fit, at all, into Zola s master plan that of painting the revolutionary heroes with empathy and spirit Instead, he comes across as a dejected and already defeated malingerer I, in turn, was quite defeated by this novel Someday I may return to it, and work my way through it again to see if it comes across clearly Perhaps I would have luck if I sipped it accompanied by a pure broth As other reviewers have noted, this story has been done better by Dickens and Hugo In Dickens, for one, it is a far, far better tale, told with less indigestion.If there had been less food for thought, it might have merited a 4 star rating.

  7. says:

    I hadn t read Zola in years Th r se Raquin was forced on me in college and it left a bitter taste in my mouth despite the fact that I barely remember anything about it now , but last year, I binged read everything Anthony Bourdain wrote, and he mentions The Belly of Paris over and over again as his favorite book He was one of my favorite humans, so I take his book recommendations seriously, and got my hands on a copy of what he referred to as the greatest work of food porn ever written.Anthony did not lie to me The food descriptions in this book are well obscene Not in a bad way, though I must say that not unlike porn, it occasionally gets a little disturbing and overwhelming Vegetarians beware The story follows Florent, a rather na ve man, who after escaping wrongful imprisonment, is taken in by half brother and his wife, and lands a job as an inspector in Paris central food market, les Halles This situation will put him in the middle of a strange rivalry between his sister in law and a stubborn fishwife, but will also expose him to the plotting of a group of would be revolutionaries who want to stage another uprising of the working class and topple the Empire Side plots involving orphans who grew up between the markets stalls and a cynical but friendly painter punctuate Florent s story.Zola was fond of painting vividly detailed pictures of the best and the worst aspects of humanity The school of Naturalism was about observing through the lens of natural sciences and commenting, but this movement certainly had a strong tendency to focus on less savory aspects of human behavior There is precious little optimism to be found in Zola s work, and when it s there, you kind of know it will end badly anyway The constant conflicts between the fats and the thins , the mean spirited gossip, the strange hierarchy of Paris famous food market paint a pretty bleak picture But Cadine and Marjolin s story cuts through it with its innocent and liberated joy albeit for a rather short interlude It is also lovely to see that Zola created strong, clever and realistic female characters, who aren t afraid to get their hands dirty, work hard and plan the downfall of the monarchy.Zola s prose is simply amazing it is so evocative that you can see, smell and feel the settings he describes, from the odorous fish market to the warm and cozy charcuterie store He captures the demeanor of his characters perfectly, and while their huge number can sometimes be confusing, I could picture them as well as if I had been sitting on those quarrelsome meetings in the poultry shop People, full of thoughts, contradictions, needs and wants, clashing or agreeing with each other truly come alive through his pen.A beautiful book, that food lovers might just drool all over I m going to go have a snack now

  8. says:

    I m not going to lie I was on the verge of giving up when I reached Chapter Three The revolting description of the putrid smells of the Central Markets present day Les Halles , while evincing Zola s extraordinary keen observation of details and his skills with words, was a major turn off I think I will avoid eating cheese for a long time to come.Notwithstanding, I did slog along to reach Chapter Five, whence the action started to pick up steam, and by the time I finished the novel, tears filled my eyes In the final analysis, I have to admit that I still liked Zola s use of symbolism that is heavily laced with satire, especially in his tongue in cheek depiction of the hypocrisy of the haves the fat towards the have nots the thin like Beautiful Lisa s initial superficial warmth towards Scraggy Florent, which then turns to bitter alienation when her self interest is threatened , of the envious tendencies of the wannabe haves like the jealous malice of the gossipy and greedy Mademoiselle Saget, Madame Lecoeur, La Sarriet and Madame Mehudin , and of the invincible driving force of materialism in a bourgeois society in general like the markets being symbolized as the glutted, digesting beast of Paris, wallowing in its fat and silently upholding the Empire It seems to me that somewhere beneath all the stomach turning descriptive lexicon, Zola wants to express just one thought in this novel, which is what the painter Claude says in exclamation at the very end What blackguards respectable people are In a less serious note, the novel does offer some interesting tidbits about Paris in the early days of the Second Empire One of these was a practice where bijoutiers peddled leftover food scraps from the large restaurants, the royal households and state ministries to the underprivileged class for a few sous per portion Another was that the fattening of pigeons was done by specially trained laborers called gaveurs, whose job was to force feed the pigeons.

  9. says:

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  10. says:

    Florent Quenu espoused an ideal of pure virtue and sought refuge in a world of absolute truth and justice and became a republican, entering the realm of republican ideals as girls with broken hearts enter a convent and unable to find a republic where sufficient peace and kindness prevailed to soothe his troubled mind, he created one of his own His delusional, Christ like his brother being his only disciple naivet feeds and nurtures the petty intrigue of the families who inhabit the Parisian food market, Les Halles The result is one of Zola s masterful stories filled with intricate subplots that cause the reader to have ever changing allegiances and impressions about the characters.Zola was a master of descriptive writing In The Belly of Paris he creates scenes that the reader can see, feel, taste and, most impressively, smell the market, all of which are integral to the story As in many of his stories, hypocritical, vicious gossip drives the narrative The highlight in this novel is a scene in which Zola intertwines the voices of the women at the market with the stench of the cheeses surrounding them as their chattering sets off the events leading to a tragic, almost inevitable, conclusion As the great explosion of smells combined, t he stench rose and spread, no longer a collection of individual smells, but a huge, sickening mixture It seemed for a moment that it was the vile words of Madame Lec ur and Mademoiselle Saget that had produced this dreadful odour Unlike many of the other novels I ve read in the Rougon Macquart cycle, the first part of the story is filled with sympathetic characters Reading on, it was like a being in a constant, unbalanced state and compelled me to keep reading The Belly of Paris would be a great starting point for anyone interested in learning about Zola s writing.

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