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The Red and the Black (Barnes & Noble Classics) (2005)

English | November 1, 2005 | ISBN: 159308286X | EPUB | 576 Pages | 1.4 MB

The Red and the Black, by Stendhal, is part of the Barnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics:

New introductions commissioned from today’s top writers and scholars
Biographies of the authors
Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events
Footnotes and endnotes
Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work
Comments by other famous authors
Study questions to challenge the reader’s viewpoints and expectations
Bibliographies for further reading
Indices & Glossaries, when appropriate
All editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences-biographical, historical, and literary-to enrich each reader’s understanding of these enduring works.

After Napoleon’s defeat, the French aristocracy tried to reassert its power in a government known as the Restoration. Venal and corrupt, the Restoration fell in 1830. Later that year, Stendhal published his scathing satire of Restoration society, The Red and the Black. Its title refers to the military and the clergy, the two career paths open to young men of intelligence and ambition but no social standing.

Stendhal’s hero, Julien Sorel, is such a young man. A seminary student, he is nevertheless an admirer of Napoleon, and dreams of military glory. When he is hired to tutor the mayor’s children, he quickly seduces the mayor’s wife, then moves on to Paris where he conquers a nobleman’s daughter. Sorel comes to believe that the secret of success is to outperform the hypocrites and vicious opportunists who surround him-and he’s right. But when the rich and powerful he so admires align against him, his downfall becomes unavoidable.

A master of characterization, Stendhal paints a fascinating, multi-layered portrait of Julien Sorel, who endures as one of literature’s most complex and surprisingly sympathetic-a would-be manipulator out of his depth in a sea of sharks.

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