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Introduction & Overview of The Immoralist by André Gide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 55 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Immoralist.
This section contains 247 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
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The Immoralist Summary & Study Guide Description

The Immoralist Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains For Further Reading and a Free Quiz on The Immoralist by André Gide.


André Gide's controversial short novel L'Immoraliste (1902; The Immoralist) describes a journey of self-discovery by which a young man becomes increasingly aware of his homosexual inclinations. The Immoralist is based on Gide's personal experience of discovering his homosexuality while traveling as a young man in North Africa.

The Immoralist is narrated by Michel, a young man who describes his marriage to Marceline, a woman he hardly knew, and lays bare the developments of his inner life during the first few years of their marriage. While on an extended honeymoon in North Africa, Michel finds himself attracted to young Arab boys. This experience inspires him to embark on a journey of self-discovery through which he eventually finds himself leading a double life: he presents a false facade to his wife, while going out on his own to follow his natural inclinations and experience his true inner being. Back home in France, Marceline announces that she is pregnant. Meanwhile, Michel finds himself increasingly drawn to healthy and attractive young men. Becoming ill from tuberculosis, Marceline suffers a miscarriage. Michel, motivated by a strong desire to return to North Africa, pushes her to travel with him, despite her deteriorating health. After she dies, Michel is left to grapple with the meaning of his own life, and to come to terms with his homosexual tendencies.

The central theme of The Immoralist is repressed homosexuality. Gide's narrative further explores themes of life versus death, mind versus body, and the process of self-discovery.

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This section contains 247 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Immoralist Study Guide
The Immoralist from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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