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L'Assommoir (1877)

de Émile Zola

Outros autores: Veja a seção outros autores.

Séries: Les Rougon-Macquart (7)

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2,431466,282 (4.12)1 / 208
Regarded by critics as one of the highest pinnacles of achievement in Emile Zola's literary career, L'Assommoir (best translated as "the cheap liquor store") offers an unflinching look at alcoholism among the working class in nineteenth-century France. Part of a larger, 20-volume story cycle that spanned Zola's entire career, L'Assommoir was the novel that initially propelled the writer to fame and fortune.… (mais)
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 Author Theme Reads: L'Assommoir by Zola8 por ler / 8jfetting, Julho 2013

» Veja também 208 menções

Inglês (36)  Francês (5)  Espanhol (1)  Italiano (1)  Catalão (1)  Todos os idiomas (44)
Mostrando 1-5 de 44 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
New translation by Brian Nelson, to read soon.
  therebelprince | Apr 21, 2024 |
I run the risk, with Zola, of being biased and excessively rapturous. Well, you know what? I try to do it so rarely that you can just put up with it, in this instance!

L'Assomoir, translated roughly as The Drinking Den or sometimes The Dram Shop is the seventh in Zola's 20-volume Rougon-Macquart series and, famously, it's the one that made him a household name in Third Republic France. Zola should be required reading for all people of a left-wing persuasion: he's fiercely angry about the state of society, the ways in which individuals vote against their own interests due to ill education or a quick buck, the destructive forces of poverty and inequality upon people's ability to make smart decisions, and - especially - to the short-sighted hypocrisy of moral reformers and snobs, who proliferated throughout France during its last period of Empire, between 1851 and 1870, which this series chronicles. He is a core text in 19th century class-conscious critiques, with the eye of a 20th century sociologist, always seeking a dozen root causes for a problem when lesser minds - sometimes minds in power - would settle for one. "People wouldn't be poor if they didn't waste their lives on drink and sex!" said the wealthy (who - as the author has chronicled in earlier instalments - waste much of their life on same). "Perhaps", Zola retorts, "we should ask why they drink and have sex, and whether they really had any chance of escaping poverty to begin with."

In the character of Gervaise, a washerwoman torn between three men, various children from different fathers, and a monotonous life broken up only by bouts of injury, brutality, or drunken joy, Zola found a character to enrage and enrapture the literati of Paris in equal measure. As the novel was serialised, readers couldn't tell whether the author was creating a story of a sinner's moral downfall, or just enjoying creating a scandal ("being a pornographer", as his critics called him until his dying day).

But, really, he is doing neither. And this is the point. Zola should also be read by those of a right-wing persuasion. Gervaise's downfall is upsetting. (It's a cakewalk compared to some of the truly brutal, exhausting lives of others, notably an 8-year-old girl acting as mother to her two baby siblings, and as a lighting rod for the graphically-written beatings of her father, widowed by his own hand.) But the lives of Gervaise and all of her compatriots in the working-class neighbourhood near the outer wall of Paris are logical extensions of the society in which they live. It is here that the great overall structure of the Rougon-Macquart comes into play. The opulent "elegant decay" of [b:The Kill|3888856|The Kill|Émile Zola|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1475574769l/3888856._SY75_.jpg|839934]. The dog-eat-dog world of food market Les Halles in [b:The Belly of Paris|6662310|The Belly of Paris|Émile Zola|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1348413678l/6662310._SY75_.jpg|10242] (centering around Gervaise's sister Lisa, who perhaps unreasonably does not appear in this book). And most notably [b:His Excellency Eugène Rougon|36794160|His Excellency Eugène Rougon (Les Rougon-Macquart, #6)|Émile Zola|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1518919256l/36794160._SY75_.jpg|1356899], in which Gervaise's cousin Eugene rises in politics by treating Paris and all of her complex social issues as mere means to an end. If L'Assomoir scandalised France, Zola wanted to say, they should take a long, hard look at themselves.

While the novel is lengthy and often grim, it is also very funny. Zola and Dickens are incredibly different in their structure and approach, although they played similar roles in their respective cultures. But whereas Dickens was a social reformer in the classical sense, with his one-dimensional, honest-but-down-on-their-luck poor, Zola doesn't let his characters off lightly. There are dozens of characters populating Gervaise's world, and they're filled with delightful contradictions, peccadilloes that others excuse on dubious moral grounds, and a constant need to judge others behind their back, all the while assuring everyone that they're not being judgmental, no, of course not. Zola is at his best (as always) in his grand set-pieces, most notably the day of Gervaise's wedding, which commences with a ceremony that no-one wishes to attend, a backlogged Town Hall more interested in bureaucracy than romance, a tipsy tour of the Louvre by a group of people who wouldn't know art if it bit them on the behind, and a messy all-night banquet which leaves the wait staff regretting that they ever agreed to hire the place out to a bunch of white trash.

Even Gervaise, whose tragedy this is, receives countless opportunities to make good decisions, and almost never does so. Zola is showcasing the complexity of poverty, the inevitable human need to prioritise short-term gain over long-term reward when one is in dire straits, but he never (well, rarely) forgets that his characters are also characters. No-one acts the way they do just because of their social tribe; we are all individuals, and he knows this.

As in every one of his novels, Zola chooses an overarching style. Here, his narrative voice is the town gossip. It's an incredible challenge for a translator, as even the omniscient narration is always in character, bursting with slang and catty tangents. Margaret Mauldon's translation seems to be up to the task.

There's always one caveat in a Zola novel, and here it's his lifelong belief (bear in mind he was born in 1840!) that, on a scientific, even genetic level, a woman's first lover "imprints" himself upon her. This was the subject of Zola's early novel [b:Madeleine Férat|312176|Madeleine Férat|Émile Zola|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1173657843l/312176._SY75_.jpg|2920502] and resurfaces here, although not in such a way that makes the novel feel outdated. Gervaise's actions (unlike Madeleine's) still feel like their own.

So, in closing, this is quite a book. Every instalment of the Rougon-Macquart is also a history lesson. Zola was chronicling a twenty-year period in France's history, and has left us with a remarkable multifaceted view of a city - a world - in all its iridescent, hypocritical, vibrant, noisy, depressing glory. When L'Assommoir was published in book form in 1877, it was an instant bestseller and, instantly, the previous six books in the series was back in print and selling like gold. While he had been a recognisable figure to Parisians since he began publishing books in the mid-1860s, Zola at last had financial stability, and could convincingly present himself as the leading author of his generation. (Luminaries Flaubert and Hugo - both of whom were reaching the end of their life - seem to have looked upon him with a mix of respect and dismay!) Now he could sit back and write the remaining 13 volumes of his series encompassing an entire era of French history. No big deal. ( )
  therebelprince | Apr 21, 2024 |
Piu’ che l’Ammazzatoio l’avrei intitolato il Dimenticatoio: luogo ove si trova rifugio dall’orribile e pesante fuori. Oppure il Buco ove mandare tutti a…

Ah! Che voglia di mandare a quel paese il mondo intero! La vita le offriva cosi’ pochi piaceri, che le sembrava gia’ una consolazione poter partecipare a meta’ nel far fuori in quel modo il loro denaro. Ci si trovava bene; perche’ mai avrebbe dovuto andarsene? (391)

Mio Dio! Era mai possibile che degli uomini lasciassero le loro donne e le loro case per rintanarsi in un buco dove soffocavano? (386)

Facevano la fila davanti all’Assommoir di papa’ Colombe, illuminato come una cattedrale per una messa solenne; e in nome di Dio! la si sarebbe detta davvero una funzione, perche’ quei bravi figlioli cantavano la’ dentro con certe facce da cantori al leggio, con le guance gonfie, la pancia tonda e sospinta in avanti. (461)

Un sabato, tornando a casa, Nana’ trovo’ il padre e la madre in condizioni vergognose. …
Nana’ non rispondeva; guardava tutta pallida la stufa fredda, la tavola senza piatti, quella lugubre stanza in cui i due ubriaconi esalavano l’ignobile orrore del loro sfacelo. Non si levo’ il cappello; fece il giro della camera; poi a denti stretti riapri’ la porta e ando’ via. (414)

Incapace d’ogni riflessione metafisica, appagato di conclusioni rudimentali (che confermano il “programma” e l’ideologia), Zola, nell’Assommoir come altrove, nonostante la sua pretesa di fare un ‘opera scientifica, riesce (consapevolmente o no) a intrecciare la solitudine essenziale dell’uomo (impossibile ogni redenzione o riscatto: l’unico “peccato” e’ l’illusione…)... (LIV)

Se pensava all’avvenire, le venivano i sudori freddi, e si paragonava a un soldo lanciato in aria e che ricade testa o croce, a seconda degli accidenti del suolo. (51)

“Ma dite un po’, cameriere, sono forse conigli da grondaia, questi? Sta ancora miagolando!” (93)

Oh! Erano davvero dei vagabondaggi senza fine, una rassegna generale di tutte le osterie del quartiere, la sbornia del mattino smaltita a mezzogiorno e riacchiappata la sera; i giri d’acquavite si moltiplicavano, si perdevano nella notte, come i lampioni di una festa, finche’ l’ultima candela non si spegne insieme all’ultimo bicchiere! (291)

( )
  NewLibrary78 | Jul 22, 2023 |
It is a shame to have to read this in translation and miss out on the argot but the Tancock version is enjoyably game in its verbal inventiveness. The relationships and dialogue feel minutely true to life, rendered in utterly lucid prose, and the circumstances almost as relevant now as then: there are many points of plot and colour startlingly in common with recent films set amid poverty like 'The Florida Project'. The plain realism of the portrayal makes the tragedy all the sadder for its complete ordinariness: a well-intentioned young woman tries to work her way out of poverty into a level of simple creature comfort, but is pulled back into squalor by the envy, laziness and parasitism of her friends and family. So old, yet it still feels like an insight into modern life at the bottom. Pair with 'This is London' by Ben Judah. ( )
  fji65hj7 | May 14, 2023 |
La Goutte d'Or es el escenario en esta obra de Zola, séptima entrega del ciclo narrativo de los Rougon-Macquart, centrada exclusivamente en el proletariado. Los problemas que abundan en los suburbios de la capital, incluso a aquellos que prueban a ganarse la vida con honradez, son los que acechan a Gervaise Maquart y los suyos: el embrutecimiento producido por el consumo excesivo de alcohol, la miseria, la falta de formación y empleo, que enturbian el ambiente de las calles del barrio.

Una mañana, Gervaise espera la llegada de Lantier, su pareja, ausente toda la noche, sin embargo, cuando esta se produce, no es para que la normalidad siga su curso, si no para cambiar por completo el rumbo de su existencia. Abandonada, sin trabajo y cargando a dos hijos, se verá obligada a buscar una pronta solución que evite su caída en la miseria. Pronto el cinquero Coupeau, vecino de ella, e interesado desde hace tiempo en la joven, se materializará como la necesaria alternativa. Pero, con el paso de los años, tanto el destino como la gente que les rodean, amenazan con romper su equilibrio a pesar de su buena disposición y su inclinación por la bondad y la honestidad.
  Natt90 | Nov 15, 2022 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 44 (seguinte | mostrar todas)

» Adicionar outros autores (188 possíveis)

Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Zola, Émileautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Andrews, NigelMapsautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Buss, RobinTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Collodi, LuisaTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Lethbridge, RobertIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Mauldon, MargaretTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Nelson, BrianTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Pugh, LeightonNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Reim, RiccardoEditorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Schwencke, J.J.Tradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Tancock, Leonard W.Tradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Toulouse-Lautrec, Henri deArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Vingeroets-Longersta… M.Tradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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Gervaise avait attendu Lantier jusqu'à deux heures du matin.
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L'Assommoir du père Colombe se trouvait au coin de la rue des Poissonniers et du boulevard de Rochechouart. L'enseigne portait, en longues lettres bleues, le seul mot : Distillation, d'un bout à l'autre. Il y avait à la porte, dans deux moitiés de futaille, des lauriers-roses poussiéreux. Le comptoir énorme, avec ses files de verres, sa fontaine et ses mesures d'étain, s'allongeait à gauche en entrant ; et la vaste salle, tout autour, était ornée de gros tonneaux peints en jaune clair, miroitants de vernis, dont les cercles et les cannelles de cuivre luisaient. Plus haut, sur des étagères, des bouteilles de liqueurs, des bocaux de fruits, toutes sortes de fioles en bon ordre, cachaient les murs, reflétaient dans la glace, derrière le comptoir, leurs taches vives, vert pomme, or pâle, laque tendre. Mais la curiosité de la maison était, au fond, de l'autre côté d'une barrière de chêne, dans une cour vitrée, l'appareil à distiller que les consommateurs voyaient fonctionner, des alambics aux longs cols, des serpentins descendant sous terre, une cuisine du diable devant laquelle venaient rêver les ouvriers soûlards. (II)
Mais Goujet avait compris. Il posa le ragoût sur la table, coupa du pain, lui versa à boire.

- Merci ! merci ! disait-elle. Oh ! que vous êtes bon ! Merci !

Elle bégayait, elle ne pouvait plus prononcer les mots. Lorsqu'elle empoigna la fourchette, elle tremblait tellement qu'elle la laissa retomber. La faim qui l'étranglait lui donnait un branle sénile de la tête. Elle dut prendre avec les doigts. A la première pomme de terre qu'elle se fourra dans la bouche, elle éclata en sanglots. De grosses larmes roulaient le long de ses joues, tombaient sur son pain. Elle mangeait toujours, elle dévorait goulûment son pain trempé de ses larmes, soufflant très fort, le menton convulsé. Goujet la força à boire, pour qu'elle n'étouffât pas ; et son verre eut un petit claquement contre ses dents.

- Voulez-vous encore du pain ? demandait-il à demi-voix.

Elle pleurait, elle disait non, elle disait oui, elle ne savait pas. Ah ! Seigneur ! que cela est bon et triste de manger, quand on crève ! (XII)
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Also published as Nana's Mother.
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Regarded by critics as one of the highest pinnacles of achievement in Emile Zola's literary career, L'Assommoir (best translated as "the cheap liquor store") offers an unflinching look at alcoholism among the working class in nineteenth-century France. Part of a larger, 20-volume story cycle that spanned Zola's entire career, L'Assommoir was the novel that initially propelled the writer to fame and fortune.

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