Ch. 9 (A Place where Convictions are about to Shape Up): [The counsel for the prosecution thundered against] The immorality of the Romantic school: In the early 1820s, when this scene takes place, the young and still conservative Victor Hugo was not yet the leader of the most "satanic" elements of liberal romanticism, and he was never as far right as the Oriflamme. One wonders how what was still a relatively obscure literary movement could have driven the illiterate Champmathieu/"Jean Valjean" to commit a crime.
[I am] A good sort who never went to dances: I.e., the public balls were frequented by grisettes and young men like Tholomyes.
Aurelia Combeferre wrote:
This is probably one of the best lines in the entire book. One of the finest acts of principle I've seen in literature. Even he knows that what he does will come at a massive price for other people, but he chooses to adhere to something more anyway.
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