A noblewoman travels from colonial Africa to revolutionary France in search of love in this nineteenth-century romantic classic.
On the Île Bourbon off the coast of Madagascar, Indiana is miserable in her marriage to the cold Colonel Delmare. Although she has a friendly companion in the ever-present Englishman Sir Ralph, she yearns to feel passion and desire.
When she catches the interest of the handsome young Raymon de Ramiere, Indiana is willing to take any risk, including running away to France as the July Revolution rages in Paris. But after she falls ill, she will begin a transformation that could bring about her happiness—or her downfall.
The first novel Amantine Aurore Dupin published under the pseudonym George Sand, Indiana was an auspicious debut from one of the most fascinating and daring women of the early nineteenth century, a rebellious artist who defied societal expectations and went on to become one of the major names in French literature.
Newly translated into English, “The Devil’s Pool” is the most popular of George Sand’s novellas and her best-selling work in France today. Illustrating Sand’s brevity, liveliness, and exemplary storytelling, the tale deals with many of her characteristic themes—the relations between the sexes, the plight of the underprivileged, and the role of fantasy in human life—making it an ideal introduction to her work. Also included are translations of two of Sand’s most admired short stories, “Lavinia” and “The Unknown God,” as well as various relevant essays and documents.
An astonishingly modern novel, George Sand’s Valvèdre questions traditional Romantic representations of women and exposes the disastrous consequences such notions of femininity have for both male and female characters at a time when divorce was illegal. This first English translation by Françoise Massardier-Kenney shows Sand’s control of style and her understanding of the major tensions of early modern France: the role of women in society, the nature of motherhood, the relations between science and art, and the nature of prejudice.
An abbot’s ghost searches for an intelligent monk to exhume his manuscript from a hellish crypt and learn the truth that monks lack two things: freedom of inquiry and benevolence.
Both Gothic and philosophical, Spiridion tells the story of a young novice, Angel, who finds himself cruelly ostracized by his monastic superiors and terrified by the ghostly visits of his monastery’s founder, the abbot Spiridion. Though he founded the monastery on the search for truth, Spiridion watched his once intelligent and virtuous monks degenerate into a cruel, mindless community. Turning away from the Church and withdrawing into his cell, he poured his energy into a manuscript that tells the “truth” about Roman Catholic doctrine and monastic life and provides a vision of a new and eternal gospel. The manuscript was buried with him, and his spirit now searches for a monk who is intelligent enough to exhume it from his crypt, which is guarded by hellish spirits, and share its vision with the world.
Translated into English for the first time in more than 160 years, Spiridion offers a fierce critique of Catholic doctrine as well as solutions for living with the Church’s teachings. Although Sand had broken with the Church several years earlier, she nevertheless continued to believe in an omnipotent God, and her novel makes the distinction, as Angel’s protector, Father Alexis, puts it, “between the authority of faith and the application of this authority in the hands of men.” As translator Patricia J. F. Worth argues in her introduction, the novel’s emphasis on freedom of inquiry, benevolence, and moral reform inspired other nineteenth-century writers, including Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Matthew Arnold, and Henry James, and the novel is also relevant to twenty-first-century discussions of religious authority and rigid adherence to doctrine.
“This is an excellent translation of a tale of the supernatural by a major French author. With her searing critique of Catholicism and its labyrinthine structures, Sand in Spiridion deconstructs her culture in a way similar to what Mary Shelley has done in Frankenstein. Both works are effective as horror stories, but both can also sustain serious academic inquiry, yielding still deeper rewards. Beyond academe, serious students of religion will also find that Spiridion’s subject matter raises provocative theological questions.” — Lynn Hoggard, translator of Nelida by Marie d’Agoult
This is George Sand's second novel. Like Indiana, her first, it explores the relationship between men and women. Valentine, an aristocratic girl, falls despearately in love with Benedict, the son of a poor farmer. Again, like Indiana, this novel challenges preconceived masculine assumptions about woman's role in society. In loving Benedict, Valentine rebels against her family and her class.
This novel reverses the Abbe Prevost's Manon Lescaut and gives Manon's helplessly amoral character to a man, Leoni. Juliette, the girl he seduces, becomes the exponent of undying, endless, forgiving love. The setting is the demimonde of Venice, and the is thick with sinister figures whose influence drags the miserable lovers down.
Don't let the name fool you -- French author George Sand was not only a woman, she was a woman who was decades ahead of her time when it came to her disregard of social mores and standards of behavior. Her trailblazing take on life is on full display in The Devil's Pool, an unconventional romance of sorts in which Sand explores the stifling patriarchal traditions that often served virtually to imprison rural French women in the nineteenth century.
Best known as a novelist, George Sand (1804-1876) was also arguably the most successful woman dramatist in history. More than twenty of her plays were staged in major Paris theaters to widespread popular and critical acclaim. Translated here for the first time into English are her two most famous full-length comedies, The Marquis de Villemer and Francoise, as well as her three major one-act plays, The Paving Stone, The Japanese Lily, and A Good Deed Is Never Wasted. Noted for their lively characterization, sparkling dialogue, and deft constructions, her plays reflect the passion and generosity of her own character, as well as a quick-witted sense of humor. The translations are preceded by an introduction outlining Sand's theatrical career, the main themes and characteristics of her plays, and critical appraisals from her own generation to the present day. The translations are followed by notes and a bibliography.
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