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Gustave Flaubert, Short Biography

Recipe bylorenreyna

Gustave Flaubert was born December 12, 1821 in the family of the famous surgeon, spent his childhood and youth at the hospital where his father’s apartment was located. Flaubert himself from an early age thought that he was destined for a different field, although he began to write as a teenager. Interest in life, but more than death, which largely determined the semantic core of future works, arose here, in the walls of the Rouen hospital, when as a boy, secretly from his parents, Gustave made his way to the autopsy room and watched the bodies disfigured by death.


After receiving his initial education at the Royal College of Rouen, in 1840 Flaubert went to Paris to study law and paper writing services. This decision was not dictated by the heart: jurisprudence did not at all entertain the young man. In the most romantic capital of the world, he lives more than in isolation, he has practically no comrades.


The year 1845 dramatically changes his life vector: his father dies, and then his beloved sister, Carolina. Flaubert takes care of the daughter of his sister and her husband, and also decides to return home to his mother in order to overcome the pain of loss with her. Together with her, they settle in a small, picturesque estate in Croisset, near Rouen. From this moment, Flaubert’s whole life will be connected with this place, which he left for a long time only two times.


The inheritance received allowed Flaubert to not know material troubles, having no official service, he worked daily and painstakingly on his works.


In line with the then prevailing romanticism in literature, his first novels were written: “Memoirs of a Madman” (1838) and “November” (1842). But in the novel “Education of the Senses”, which had not seen the light, the work on which lasted from 1843 to 1845, notes of realism are clearly traced.


The beginning of his relationship with Louise Colet, a well-known writer in those days, dates back to 1846, and he made his acquaintance in Paris. This eight-year-old romance was Flaubert's longest affection. Due to the fact that the writer was very afraid to pass on his ailment by inheritance, he, not wanting to continue his family, did not offer anyone a hand and heart, although he always enjoyed popularity among women.


Glory fell upon Flaubert when, in 1856, his first novel, Madame Bovary, which was the visiting card of the writer, was published in the Revue de Paris magazine. Painstakingly, day after day, for five years, pondering each written word, Flaubert wrote a book on how illusion can destroy reality. The plot is simple: an unremarkable, more than ordinary bourgeoisie, to give color to his life, makes two affairs, not noticing that a loving person was always there.


The novel, which ended with the suicide of the heroine, made a lot of noise. The author and editors of the magazine were brought to trial for immorality. The sensational trial ended with an acquittal. But in 1864, the Vatican added “Madame Bovary” to the Index of Prohibited Books.


The subtlest psychology in revealing the image of the main character became a real discovery in literature and in many ways determined the path of development of the entire European novel.


In 1858, Flaubert made a trip to Africa, bringing from the voyage not only impressions, but also his second novel, “Salambo,” the action of which takes the reader to ancient Carthage, making him a witness to the love of the daughter of a military leader and barbarian leader. Historical authenticity and respect for every detail of the narrative allowed this book to take its rightful place in a series of historical novels.


The third novel of the writer “Education of feelings” is devoted to the theme of “the lost generation”.


Until his death, the writer mastered new literary horizons: he tried himself as a playwright, actively used biblical subjects. Flaubert devoted eight years to the novel Bouvard and Pécuchet, which remained incomplete due to the death of the writer.


Exhausted by the disease, Flaubert died of an apoplexy stroke in 1880.



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