First published in 1990. Balzac, Zola and Faulkner all drew upon the principles of evolutionary theory to represent man’s place in nature and his struggle for survival in their major series La Comèdie humaine, Rougon-Macquart and the Yoknapatawpha fiction. This book focuses on the ‘first’ novels in each author’s series (La Père Goriot, La Fortune des Rougon and Flags in the Dust) and considers how each novel relates to its series and derives a definition of the naturalistic roman-fleuve. To describe this development, the issues of how a scientific idea becomes refracted in a literary genre and how the naturalistic novel developed out of the realistic novel are considered.
Table of Contents
Preface; Acknowledgments; Chapter I The Tangled Bank: Evolutionary Theory and the Roman-Fleuve Chapter II The Christ of Paternity: La Père Goriot Chapter III Eternal Recommencement: La Fortune des Rougon Chapter IV The Blind Tragedy of Human Events: Flags in the Dust; Conclusion; Notes; Bibliography