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 » Sun Jun 16, 2013 4:20 pm

Gervais wrote:
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!


Also I think it might have been a slight indictment against certain individuals in his day? Bearing in mind that Hugo was working on this post 1848?
"...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 4:33 pm

Aurelia Combeferre wrote:
Gervais wrote:
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!


Also I think it might have been a slight indictment against certain individuals in his day? Bearing in mind that Hugo was working on this post 1848?

To the footnotes! *trumpets*


Let some military Prudhomme accidentally win the decisive battle of an era: An allusion to Wellington. Prudhomme and prudhommerie came to refer to banal mediocrity in ninteenth-century France, following the writer and illustrator Henri Monnier's hugely successful caricature of the 1830s. Monnier's Prudhomme was well intentioned but also pretenious, vain, and ignorant.

There's also a note on how Hugo doesn't like the successors of Caesar Augustus, but I don't have anything on 1848 in the Rose notes.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:39 am

June 17, 2013

What He Believed

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/13/

Ahh, the references to austerity and what he believes in.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Gervais » Mon Jun 17, 2013 5:20 pm

As an early Christmas or birthday gift, I would like an essay* from someone comparing Valjean and the Bishop, because seriously:
In the past, if we believe the tales told about him as a young man and even as a more mature man, Monseigneur Bienvenu had been a man of passion, perhaps even a violent man. His universal goodwill was not so much a natural instinct as a firm conviction that had trickled into his heart from life, slowly dripping into him, thought by thought; for a person's nature, like a rock, can be drilled into by drops of water. Such channels bored through fare ineffaceable; some formations, indestructible.

And the Bishop is in his seventies but looks sixty, much like Valjean, as well. So, please? Pretty please? :mrgreen:

*MLA formatting not required. :wink:
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:45 am

If only I had time to...

June 18, 2013

What He Thought

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/14/

The Bishop's intellectual take on mysteries of life and faith.

We're going to meet Valjean soon! Hooray!
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Wed Jun 19, 2013 11:53 am

JUNE 19, 2013

The Evening of a Day Walking

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/15/

A certain traveler arrives at Digne, and gets turned away at nearly every corner. Biblical parallel much again?
"...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 » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:13 pm

The entire "Ask and you shall receive, knock and the door will open" verse personified at the end, pretty much. And I guess you could say him asking to stay in a stable, but even that request is denied. I'm impressed that Hugo didnt go off in a tangent along the lines of "even the birthplace of Christ was closed to him" at that point.

Can we take a moment to appreciate the one part that 1998 got almost absolutely right? In a really condensed form, of course, but really the only way it could be much better would be if he had a shaved head, and I'm not sure if he didnt.(Actually, two parts 1998 got right: the Prologue, if you will, and the moments alone with Javert before Valjean returns to be arrested. That one's not entirely accurate, but he is writing a note that I like to think is his letter to the police.)

And a moment of appreciation for the 2012 film: I'd forgotten about this part, so I thought the clip of the kids hitting him with stones was some make-up for the lack of Petit Gervais, but it's not:
As he went out, some children who had followed him from the Cross of Colbas, and who seemed to be lying in wait for him, threw stones at him. He retraced his steps in anger, and threatened them with his stick: the children dispersed like a flock of birds.

Even the children are treating him like some mean dog, which makes his staying in a kennel even worse, and then even the dog doesn't want him. So the line "Became a thief in the night, a dog on the run" isn't just some generic phrase, and I think it's kind of interesting, too, because Javert is described like a dog or wolf (ach, can't remember) later on, too, and Éponine says she's the daughter of a wolf during the robbery.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Mademoiselle Mabeuf » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:21 pm

Doggy!Mizzies. :shock: :lol:

I find the Bishop part more and more interesting each time I read it. I don't know why, but where before it was "when are we getting to JVJ" now I'm actually, like, being entertained by it. :D
"He never left home without a book under his arm, and often returned with two..."
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:23 pm

Clever that you noticed that!

And that bit foreshadows too another inn scene later?
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Gervais » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:32 pm

Mademoiselle Mabeuf wrote:Doggy!Mizzies. :shock: :lol:

I saw this pretty cool thing of fanart where it was Valjean and Javert squaring off. Valjean had a lion with him, and Javert a wolf. I wish I could find it again, because it's awesome.

Which bit are you talking about, Aurelia? Brain is tired and only good for making weird connections at the moment.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:42 pm

The Seargent at Waterloo. It's an interesting contrast to see how Valjean handles Digne versus how he handles Montfermeil.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Gervais » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:45 pm

Oh. *facepalm* Yeah, yeah it is. My brain's a bit more awake now. And apparently named Brian.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Mademoiselle Mabeuf » Wed Jun 19, 2013 3:47 pm

...sorry, Gervais. Who's Brian? *mad anagramming skillz* Oh! Is it your brain?

EDIT: Yup, you said that, sorry.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby LauraLeZunzu » Thu Jun 20, 2013 12:14 am

My favourite chapter on this part was the one in which the bishop goes to talk with the revolutionaire, the conventionist (It is said like that in english?). I found incredibly how those two mentallities meet each other, and how the revolutionaire forces the bishop to think about some things. And I found meravelous also how Hugo describes the bishop almost as a saint for the others; but when it comes to the revolutionaire, he always tries to get away from that house, and when he arrives he is, at first, rude; only after some time starts to realise the revolutionaire wasn't a bad person. It's how prejudicies or instaured culture can make an extraordinary person behave the bad way even without knowing it.
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Re: 1.1 Un Juste/An Upright Man, 1/9/10-14/09/10

Postby Aurelia Combeferre » Thu Jun 20, 2013 1:18 pm

It really is food for thought, isn't it? That theme keeps recurring later in the novel.

June 20, 2013

Prudence Counselled to Wisdom

http://www.online-literature.com/victor_hugo/les_miserables/16/

Madame Magloire is concerned about a prowler.
"...all aptitudes having equal opportunity; politically, all votes having equal weight; religiously, all consciences having equal rights."


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