Madame Bovary ranks among the world’s most famous and widely read novels, and has inspired numerous critical theories. First published in 1987, this study draws on both twentieth-century and traditional critical views to provide both students and scholars with a fresh analysis of the novel: its narrative techniques, social background, and underlying structures. By setting the novel in an historical context, and exploring the ways in which it offers a hinge between romanticism and realism, the book establishes a framework through which the reader can assess questions of narrative strategy, of symbolic patterning and most importantly, parody and pastiche. Throughout Madame Bovary, Rosemary Lloyd argues, a series of intertwining voices challenge assumptions about the nature of narrative and the relationship between reader and writer.
This reissue will provoke and stimulate debate among students and lecturers in French and English literature, for whom Madame Bovary is a key text in the development of the novel.