Yet Naturalism gave the ideals of realism a more scientific spin. I, on the other hand, combine men and women while acknowledging natural differences, and I subject both to things.
Naturalist works often display the underbelly of a society teeming with characters whose behavior is based on inherited traits. The Paris they inhabit is grim and grimy, full of people who do not understand them.
The vast countryside areas beyond Paris are known as the French provinces. Yet Laurent is a debased version of the typical ambitious young man; his paintings are terrible and he simply seems interested in fortune, not in any long-lasting version of fame. And Poe quickly gained visibility in France, thanks to the translation work of poet and critic Charles Baudelaire.
Zola was one of a number of authors who, perhaps without consciously intending so, turned the central motif of detective fiction on its head.
The standard detective story is a solve-as-you-read narrative, which offers clues but leaves the solution to its central mystery uncertain until the very end. Sometimes, the challenge is to see who discovers the culprit first: the reader or the detective.
But Zola also plays with the crime genre by making his only eligible detectives - police commissioner Michaud and his friends - ridiculous and useless. Old Michaud has a trove of murder stories, but he is conspicuously bad at recognizing the murder right under his nose.
A typical member of the bourgeoisie would be a minor to mid-level official Grivet , Michaud or a small merchant Mme Raquin.
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Such individuals were not surrounded by massive material wealth, though they would have financial security and would take part in popular recreations, perhaps even have some worthwhile yet limited knowledge of culture and the arts. Yet the bourgeoisie was often criticized as a conservative segment of society.
In Marxist accounts of history, this middle class group is often contrasted with the proletariat: the dynamic working class that moves along social and historical improvement.
In his depiction of Grivet, the Michauds, and even Camille, Zola takes a few standard bourgeois characteristics to satirical extremes.
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Grivet, Camille, and Olivier are proud of what they have accomplished in life, even though they have done little more than find a way to fit in and make money.
It should be noted, though, that Zola was an equal-opportunity offender. These medical and psychological concepts are outgrowths of the once-popular theory of the humors, which divided humanity into four primary personality types: choleric angry , melancholic pensive , phlegmatic sluggish , and sanguine energetic. Camille could easily be classified as phlegmatic, but Zola avoids applying this adjective directly.
As Zola moved forward to compose his later novels, he would become less interested in temperament and more interested in another much-discussed biological topic: the influence of heredity.
Even though Laurent is a foil for Camille, the two men are more similar than they at first appear. Laurent is of hearty peasant stock, the picture of virile masculinity, while Camille is a sickly young man with little power.
Despite Laurent's physical prowess, he aims for a life of leisure and idleness, the kind that has plagued Camille.
Mme Raquin has nursed her child from the clutches of death throughout his childhood, but she cannot protect him from murder. This horrible twist is played out as the murderers live under her nose for so long. When she becomes ill, the people she has surrounded herself with cannot understand the crime she is trying to convey.
Thérèse Raquin – Emile Zola
Her entire life becomes a cruel irony, as the world of love, or "Temple of Peace", she has built, reveals itself to be utterly false. Though Camille's murder was motivated by the pair's desire to be together, Camille's corpse gets between them.
In an almost darkly comical moment, the erstwhile lovers discover each other's plan for one another and decide to kill themselves out of desperation. In their parallel scheming they prove they are meant to be, and they collapse in death in an embrace they were unable to manage in marriage. Their fate is worse than jail as they are tortured on a nightly basis and their eventual coupling - the motivation for the murder - does nothing to soothe them.
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The characters are trapped in their environment and by their temperaments. This is evident even in the opening descriptions of their corner of Paris.
She found little pleasure in her childhood in Vernon, raised alongside sickly Camille. Her zeal was always stifled by her cousin, and nothing changed in their marriage or their move to Paris.
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Her subjugated animal passion leads to an affair with Laurent and her contribution to Camille's murder. Even when she is free from Camille, her nervous temperament makes it impossible for her to act according to her will. Mme Raquin perhaps suffers the worst form of imprisonment, as she succumbs to total paralysis.
Despite her physical health, she remains alert and conscious, and learns of her "children's" crime against Camille.
Unable to communicate the deed to her Thursday night friends, Mme Raquin is forced to depend on her son's killers. At the end of the novel, Mme Raquin earns a mild victory, as the lovers commit double suicide in front of her. Therese Raquin study guide contains a biography of Emile Zola, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.
Therese Raquin essays are academic essays for citation. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of Therese Raquin by Emile Zola.
Remember me. Forgot your password? Buy Study Guide. Study Guide for Therese Raquin Therese Raquin study guide contains a biography of Emile Zola, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. Essays for Therese Raquin Therese Raquin essays are academic essays for citation.