Author(s): Jean Améry; Adrian Nathan West (Translator)
Jean AmUry undertakes one of the most unusual projects in twentieth-century literature- a novel-essay devoted to salvaging the poor bungler, Charles Bovary, from the depredations of his creator, Gustave Flaubert. As a once-promising novelist reduced to hack journalism for two decades after the Second World War, AmUry had a particular sympathy for failure, and Charles Bovary- Country Doctoris his phenomenology of the loser, blending fiction and philosophy to assert the moral claims of the most famous, most risible cuckold in all of Western literature. Charles Bovary tells his side, AmUry vindicates Flaubert's hated bourgeoisie, and in the end, the Master himself winds up in the docket, forced to account for the implausibility of his own vaunted realism. At the same time, in Charles's words, AmUry offers a moving paean to the majesty of Madame Bovary herself, and to the supreme value of love.