A critical masterpiece, Madame Bovary is the story of Emma Bovary’s search for passion and the consequences that follow. While deeply loved by her husband Charles, Emma is unhappy with the banality of her provincial life, and seeks excitement in infidelity and living beyond her means. Left brokenhearted and penniless, the truth of Emma’s life ultimately destroys her and her family.
Reflecting on the bourgeoisie of France in the early nineteenth century, Madame Bovary is Flaubert’s commentary on the wealthy’s romantic delusions and the impact such delusions have on the lives of everyone involved. Upon the publication of Madame Bovary in 1856 Gustave Flaubert was prosecuted for obscenity and offending public morals. In 1857 he was acquitted, and, aided by the publicity from the trial, Madame Bovary became a bestseller. It has been adapted for film, television, and theatre, including two adaptions in 2014—Madame Bovary starring Mia Wasikowska and Paul Giamatti, and Gemma Bovery starring Gemma Arterton.
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