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Romanticism vs. Realism in Gustav Flaubert's Madame Bovary

Interactive Oral Presentation
by

Paul Tam

on 1 October 2012

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Transcript of Romanticism vs. Realism in Gustav Flaubert's Madame Bovary

What is Realism? What is Romanticism? Get into 3 groups (two groups of 5, one of 4)
Within each group, you will be assigned a character.
When asked a question, answer the question as if you were your character.
If you answer it correctly, you will advance to the next question (next ring). If you answer incorrectly, you do not advance.
Whoever reaches the center first, wins (and collects their prize). Game! Flaubert portrays Yonville realistically.
He focuses on the class systems and it plays a huge part in the novel.
Flaubert's realism portrays the Yonville as it is (a dull town); however, the way he writes brings the town to life, so the novel does not take on the uninteresting tone of its characters and events. Flaubert’s Realism The agriculture fair accurately portrays rural life:
Monsieur Lieuvain’s long and dull speech about the government accurately shows how unromantic Yonville is.
Also emphasizes Emma’s unhappiness The Agriculture Fair “’I implore you, Monsieur Lheureux, just a few days more!’ she was sobbing. ’What do I care?’ said he, shutting the door” (208).
Lheureux comes in at the worst possible moments to demand payment. for example, he gives Charles a bill while Emma is gravely ill. Lheureux “And indeed, what is better than to sit but one’s fireside in the evening with a book, while the wind beats against the window and the lamp is burning?” (58).
“…I think verse more tender than prose, and that it moves far more easily to tears” (59). Léon “’Oh, forgive me! You are the only one who pleases me. I am imbecile and cruel. I love you. I will love you always. What is it? Tell me!’ He [Rodolphe] was kneeling by her” (220).
“I am your servant, your concubine! You are my king, my idol! You are good, you are beautiful, you are clever, you are strong!” (134). Rod olphe and Emma’s Relationship “Along the line of seated women painted fans were fluttering, bouquets half-hid smiling faces, and gold-stoppered scent-bottles were turned in partly-closed hands, whose white gloves outlined the nails…” (34).
“…he [Justin] greedily watched all these women’s [Emma’s] clothes spread out about him, the dimity petticoats, the fichus, the collars…” (132). Emma’s Wardrobe “She wanted to get some personal profit out of things… looking for emotions, not landscapes” (24-25).
Emma read Romantic novels when she was in the convent; they made her dream of a more Romantic life.
“They thought she was delirious; and she was by midnight. Brain fever had set in” (148).
Emma was reacting extremely to Rodolphe’s farewell letter—she had ‘brain fever’ for 43 days. Emma “She bought a plan of Paris, and with the tip of her finger on the map she walked about the capital. She went up the boulevards, stopping at every turn, between the lines of the streets, in front of the white squares that represented the houses” (39).
“She [Emma] wished at the same time to die and to live in Paris” (41). Emma and Paris She is a victim of her own Romanticism
Emma is unable to see herself and the world as they truly are—she is constantly viewing herself and her surroundings from a Romantic perspective.
Her monotonous Yonville life makes Emma want something more exciting. Emma It is the Romantic quality or spirit in thought, expression, or action.
Romanticism was a literary movement emphasizing emotion over reason and subjectivity over objectivity.
In the first half of the 1800s, French art and literature was predominantly Romantic. Romanticism By John Goodling, Akshar Patel, and Paul Tam Romanticism vs. Realism in Gustav Flaubert’s Madame Bovary Emma romanticized her own suicide—she thought her death would be quick and painless.
“She soon began vomiting blood…Her limbs convulsed, her whole body covered with brown spots…” (226).
“…and a rush of black liquid issued, as if she were vomiting, from her mouth” (234). Death by Arsenic Realism stresses the presentation of life as it is, without embellishment or idealization.
Awareness or acceptance of the fact and necessities of life.
It is a practical, rather than a moral or dogmatic view of things
In the latter half of the 1800s, French art and literature was mainly Realist. Realism “But still, when he saw that she did not move, Charles threw himself upon her, crying– ‘Farewell, Farewell!’” (231).
“I wish her to be buried in her wedding-dress, with white shoes, and a wreath… Three coffins, one of oak, one of mahogany, one of lead” (232). Charles (After Emma’s death) Emma wanted a Romantic wedding while Rouault wanted a more practical, “normal” wedding.
“Emma would, on the contrary, have preferred a midnight wedding with torches, but old Rouault could not understand such an idea” (17). Emma’s vs. Rouault’s Ideal Wedding
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