1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Abaissé re-reads the novel in its entirety! All welcome, no matter whether you're reading in French or some other translation. Discussion topics for each step along the way.

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Aurelia Combeferre
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:08 am

Feel free to post and comment here!!

June 10, 2013

Monsigeneur Bienvenu Made His Cassocks Last Too Long

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/5/

More of the Bishop's humility and his extraordinary measures as far as charity is concerned. Rather remarkable at least when compared to the general impressions of 19th century clergy?
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby meow139 » Tue Jun 11, 2013 5:32 am

Hi! Late to the party because I'm an idiot and didn't see this until tonight.

God, I remember first picking up the book, flipping to the first page, realizing there were fifty pages of Bishop, and then just slamming the book shut and walking away. When I finally did start the novel, this was torture for me to get through because even though I liked the Bishop, much of the politics tended to sail straight over my head and I just wanted the plot to get started.

Looking back, I realize that this was necessary and even rather smart. It shows exactly who the Bishop is and why he had such a big impact on poor Valjean. The man is a veritable saint.

But I can't help but note how intimidating this entire section is to someone just starting the book. I'm just glad I forced myself to start reading, because it was worth it.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Tue Jun 11, 2013 12:20 pm

It's intimidating but necessary. I think it's a good contrast to the rest of the book!

June 11, 2013

Cravatte

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/7/

The Bishop takes on the subject of robbers and brigands.,
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Wed Jun 12, 2013 8:12 am

June 12, 2013

Philosophy After Drinking

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/8/

In which M. Myriel is invited to dinner, a politician rambles, and gets a calm reply on materialism.

The last line is food for thought.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby YoungStudentMarius » Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:04 am

*casually points out the pun of 'food for thought' with food in that last sentence* Though, just to solidify the simile by going into the actual foods themselves for a minute, I looked them up (because I didn't know the difference :oops: ), and apparently a truffled turkey was considered one of the highest of delicacies, because truffles themselves had just come into fashion in the 1780s, especially in Paris, and had to be imported, whereas chestnuts were literally viewed as "food for poor people," and were said (in the late 1700s) to "give a sallow complexion." ( Chestnuts, however, were frequently used as a staple food, and even a grain, in senses, often as a substitute for potatoes, or in flour [though it wouldn't rise, another reason it was looked down upon]).

All right, so I may not be as experienced as a lot of you in all the allusions, but I figured it wouldn't do any harm to post some of the ones I'd never heard of here, just in case there were others who felt the same, because there were a lot in this chapter.
Pigault-Lebrun-- a French novelist and playwright who wrote/published his works after the French Revolution, one of which was Citateur, "a collection of quotations against Christianity"
Pyrrhon-- a Greek philosopher who is known as the "father of Skepticism"
Marquis d'Argens-- a French philosopher and writer who was "an arch opponent of the Catholic church"
M. Naigeon-- a French atheist philosopher
Needham-- John Needham, a biologist, who did an experiment that seemed to prove spontaneous regeneration, but was later called into question when repeated by another scientist, who finished with opposing results. Voltaire and Needham got into very heated arguments over his theory.
"...over the fas and the nefas"-- from Latin "Per fas et nefas," or "for all funds lawfully or unlawfully."
Tertullian-- A Roman Christian author who died in 225 A.D., "the father of Latin Christianity," and "the founder of Western theology"
Inter pocula-- Latin for, "over a glass; while drinking"
Sardanapalus-- Legendarily, "a decadent figure who spends his life in self-indulgence and dies in an orgy of destruction."
Vincent de Paul-- a Catholic priest and a saint, who is called the "Great Apostle of Charity"

Also, sorry not to have been here 'til now. :oops: Hope I'm not too late.
Our chimeras are the things which most resemble us. Each of us dreams of the unknown and the impossible in accordance with his nature.

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Thu Jun 13, 2013 11:46 am

Nice work, Marius!!

Will read up more on the personalities you highlighted.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Thu Jun 13, 2013 12:16 pm

June 13, 2012

The Brother as Depicted By the Sister

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/9/

A good man described by someone familiar, who has learned to cope with his ways.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby YoungStudentMarius » Fri Jun 14, 2013 1:21 am

And yet, it was more than cope. I almost wonder what they'd been like as children, if they were so close as to die without each other, and yet so very different.
Our chimeras are the things which most resemble us. Each of us dreams of the unknown and the impossible in accordance with his nature.

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Fri Jun 14, 2013 5:17 am

This is begging for fic to be written. :lol: :lol: :lol:

June 14, 2013

The Bishop in the Presence of an Unknown Light

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/10/

The Bishop and the man of the Convention.

What do you all think of them?
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Mademoiselle Mabeuf » Fri Jun 14, 2013 5:42 am

Ah crap I went on vacation and now I'm five chapters behind and it's almost one in the morning...okay, okay. *trying to convince myself this is not absolutely urgent and I do not need to read it right this very instant*...le sigh.
"He never left home without a book under his arm, and often returned with two..."
^Victor Hugo on my life.
When I rule the world I'll plant flowers. :twisted:

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Sat Jun 15, 2013 7:29 am

Come on guys, comments? *dusts off thread*

June 15, 2013

A Restriction

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/11/

The Bishop with regard to some of the political tides of the day. Again note the contrasts between M. Myriel and Bonaparte.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Gervais » Sat Jun 15, 2013 7:42 am

Uno momento, Aurelia! Had to catch up.

Pardon the following ramble.

Anyway, I'd like to backtrack to the gardens, and a little bit to a discussion from the Monomyth/Symbolism thread awhile back. I'm about 99.99% sure of Hugo using gardens as a symbol of life, but sometimes the specifics vary between characters. Ignoring Georges' and Mabeuf's gardens for the moment.

In three of these, Madame Magloire cultivated vegetables; in the fourth, the Bishop had planted some flowers; here and there stood a few fruit-trees. Madame Magloire had once remarked, with a sort of gentle malice: "Monseigneur, you who turn everything to account, have, nevertheless, one useless plot. It would be better to grow salads there than bouquets." "Madame Magloire," retorted the Bishop, "you are mistaken. The beautiful is as useful as the useful." He added after a pause, "More so, perhaps.”


More contrast between them, yay!

Later, it says that the Bishop "did not study plants," but just loved flowers. So it's sort of a symbol for how he cares for the people; he knows the Bible and Doctrines, of course, and he does study them, but he's a bishop out of love for others, not because he wants to judge people or whatnot. And then the love theme can apply to the other gardens, too, if you want. Just a thought, maybe one that you had before; I kinda just skimmed over what posts there were. :oops:
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Sat Jun 15, 2013 7:47 am

That garden symbolism is fascinating (and more so if we factor in the garden of the Rue Plumet later).

The contrast between adoration and love never ceases to fascinate me.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Sun Jun 16, 2013 4:17 am

June 16, 2013

The Solitude of Monsigeneur Welcome

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/12/

Why a Bishop is still best known as the humble Cure.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."

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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Gervais » Sun Jun 16, 2013 3:57 pm

A bishop is almost always surrounded by a full squadron of little abbes, just as a general is by a covey of young officers.

We need to start a talley of how often Hugo compares Myriel to Napoleon or a general General. Pardon the pun, I haven't made one on awhile and was starting to have withdrawals.
Although, a general is usually ambitious, and This whole chapter is almost only there to reinforce the idea that he does what he does out of love, not ambition. Contrast, woo!
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