This novel achieved immediate notoriety through its questioning of marriage, sex and the role of women. Stephen Heath shows how this landmark text captures and articulates a fundamental experience of the postromantic, commerical-industrial, democratic period. He explains how Madame Bovary represents Flaubert's intense personal engagement with the tragedy of bourgeois culture, while at the same time exemplifying the author's commitment to the impersonality of art and the transcendence of style.
"Heath's study is a distinguished addition to the Landmarks of World Literature series. It is lucidly written, persuasively argued and clearly presented. It makes a splendid companion volume to Flaubert's masterpiece." Robert T. Denomme, French Review