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While I’m not a fan of city realism, I have to admit that as far as classics go this novel is the cornerstone upon which most of our realistic literature stems from. In Cooper’s representations of Native AmericansBalzac saw a human barbarism that survived gkriot attempts at civilization.

Since social inequality was in itself immoral and unjustified, why not be thoroughly immoral and appropriate capital by whatever means are available? There is zero spark.

You think I blame it? A favorite of Balzac’s, the book quickly won widespread popularity and has often been adapted for film and the stage. There is enough plot to keep the pages turning. I expected to like this book more, and I didn’t absolutely love it perhaps because this is a precurser to the works of Hugo and Zola whose novels I really love, and somehow less refined — in short, I was kind of disappointed, and I know this author and love him but haven’t read him in a while so this may be something too.

In a relatively compact novel, Balzac explores multitudes. The version I read was titled Old Goriot.


El tio Goriot / Pere Goriot

Balzac himself was extremely proud of the work, declaring even before the final installment was published: The newest resident of the boarding house was Eugene de Rastignac who had recently arrived from the country, carrying all of the hopes of his family, to study gorot. I often have this problem with 19th century novels; the ending is so telegraphed that the moralizing is done in mind well before we get to the drawn out explanation.

I was made curious. Before long, the boarders learn that police are seeking Vautrin, revealed to be a master criminal nicknamed Trompe-la-Mort “Cheater of Death”.

El Tío Goriot

Scott was also a profound influence on Balzac, particularly in his use of real historical events as the backdrop for his novels. Things have always been like this. Must I consent to be the lackey of those who have lied, scraped and crawled? The more coldly calculating you are, the further you will go. Old Goriot presented in Everyman Books He is the father of two beautiful daughters who married men because the men were both titled and rich. His journal records several undated lines about the plot: Or was it that all pretensions to live a up-and-comer middle-class life is buying into the capitalist illusion?

Even too he is dying in extreme poverty, at the end of the book, he sells his few remaining possessions to provide for his daughters so that they might look splendid at a ball.

Rastignac refuses to go along with the plot, balking at the idea of having someone killed to acquire their wealth, but he takes note of Vautrin’s machinations. Some don’t see what is before their eyes. Vautrin arranges for a friend to kill Victorine’s brother, in the meantime, and is captured by the police.


He has brought himself to penury by spoiling his two daughters, who have to rich, successful men. She preferred to blame others for her own failings. Open Preview See a Problem? However, this book is a formula to be studied but not to be emulated at all!

We just go there all the time. The old man is ridiculed frequently by the other boarders, who soon learn that he has bankrupted himself to support his two well-married daughters.

El Tio Goriot : Honore de Balzac :

The novel’s representations of social stratification are specific to Paris, perhaps the most densely populated city in Europe at the time. Rl narrative of Goriot’s painful relations with his children has also been interpreted as a tragicomic parable of Louis XVI’s decline.

Who was that man, and what sort of books might he write?