Saturday, March 10, 2012

Stendhal and the Civil Code

Following up on that last post, I'm remembering that Stendhal once told Balzac that he warmed up for novelizing by reading the French Civil Code.  Cute, but I think it has to be a joke: Stendhal is, after all, a compulsive trickster with a taste for the obscure and the faux pedantic: if this (if in little else) a bit like Joyce.  

The odd thing is--literary scholars appear to take him at face value and to consider the deeper meaning of the comparison.  One thinks that perhaps they need to lighten up.

Afterthought: I seem to have thought this thought before.

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