Cousin Bette: Part One of Poor Relations | Literature Criticism Critical Essay by James R. McGuire

This literature criticism consists of approximately 15 pages of analysis & critique of Cousin Bette: Part One of Poor Relations.
This section contains 4,309 words
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Critical Essay by James R. McGuire

SOURCE: McGuire, James R. “The Feminine Conspiracy in Balzac's La Cousine Bette.Nineteenth-Century French Studies 20, nos. 3 & 4 (spring-summer 1992): 295-304.

In the following essay, McGuire explores the lesbianism in La cousine Bette and argues that the title character of the novel dies outside the narrative because her sexual rebellion threatens patriarchal society; she must disappear to the margins of the novel, it is argued, so that the virtues of the family can be extolled.

There is something suspicious about the deaths of Lisbeth Fischer and Valérie Marneffe. Bette dies outside of the narrative, parenthetically, of a “phtisie pulmonaire,” yet she is the title character; the scene of Valérie's death is rife with melodrama and moral symbolism. The awkward, expeditious elimination of these...

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This section contains 4,309 words
(approx. 15 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by James R. McGuire