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The Stelliferous FoldToward a Virtual Law of Literature's Self-Formation$
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Rodolphe Gasché

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780823234349

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823234349.001.0001

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The Veil, the Fold, the Image: On Gustave Flaubert's Salammbo

The Veil, the Fold, the Image: On Gustave Flaubert's Salammbo

(p.337) Chapter 15: The Veil, the Fold, the Image: On Gustave Flaubert's Salammbo
The Stelliferous Fold

Rodolphe Gasché

Fordham University Press

Gustave Flaubert thought of Salammbo as an archaeological novel. As he admitted to Feydeau, he intended his archaeological work to be only tentative. Apart from its epic qualities, one of the distinguishing features of this work to which literary critics have paid significant attention is Flaubert's taste for the tableau, manifest not only in the superbly painted landscapes, the plastic effects of his descriptions, but also stylistically and syntactically. This chapter gives a succinct summary of the plot of the novel whose action took place during the Mercenary War of 241–238 bc, which pitted the mercenaries that Carthage had hired to fight the Romans in the immediately preceding first Punic War against their former employers who were unable, or unwilling, to fulfill their promises. This chapter talks about the crucial role of the veil, the fold, and the image in the novel.

Keywords:   Salammbo, archaeological novel, Mercenary War, Punic War, veil, fold, image

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