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L'Assommoir

Émile Zola

Book Overview: 

L’Assommoir is the seventh novel in the series. Usually considered one of Zola’s masterpieces, the novel—a harsh and uncompromising study of alcoholism and poverty in the working-class districts of Paris—was a huge commercial success and established Zola’s fame and reputation throughout France and the world. (Summary edited from Wikipedia.)

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .In the partial silence, Monsieur Madinier was talking politics. "Their law of May 31, is an abominable one. Now you must reside in a place for two years. Three millions of citizens are struck off the voting lists. I've been told that Bonaparte is, in reality, very much annoyed for he loves the people; he has given them proofs."

He was a republican; but he admired the prince on account of his uncle, a man the like of whom would never be seen again. Bibi-the-Smoker flew into a passion. He had worked at the Elysee; he had seen Bonaparte just as he saw My-Boots in front of him over there. Well that muff of a president was just like a jackass, that was all! It was said that he was going to travel about in the direction of Lyons; it would be a precious good riddance of bad rubbish if he fell into some hole and broke his neck. But, as the discussion was becoming too heated, Coupeau had to interfere.

"Ah, well! How simple you all are to quarrel about politic. . . Read More

Community Reviews

"C'est de la morale en action, simplement!"

That is Zola's laconic explanation for "L'Assommoir", simply a moral message shown in action. And what devastating action it is.

Gervaise's story begins with her in tears, sitting at home late at night, watching her two little boys Claude and Etienne, fou

الوجه الآخر لباريس في نهاية القرن التاسع عشر
فقر مدقع وانحلال وسوء أخلاق واختيارات خاطئة في الحياة تؤدي في النهاية إلى مجموعة لا تنتهي من المآسي
رواية قاتمة لأنها ترصد واقع قاتم، لم تعجبني فقط كثرة الايحاءات الجنسية في العمل، وعدم وجود بصيص أمل في العمل

بعد از ژرمینال و‌شکست این سومین کتابی بود که از امیل زولا خوندم... خیلی کتاب غم انگیزی بود از تمام تلاش‌های یک زن که فقط برای نجات زندگی دخترش ژان تلاش می‌کند. قلم زولا واقعا تاثیرگذاره و طوری از مصائب مینویسه که قلب آدم به لرزه میاد... به نظرم کتاب ژرمینال و شکست خیلی قوی‌تر بودند ولی این کتاب هم ر

Beware, reading the "Assommoir" can cause drunkenness!
Bending to turn the pages; drunk to know what hides the social violence. A black intoxication, painful, which raises the discomfort and returns to the brain.
Why is this tome one of the most famous of this author? To this question, every reader wh

At the risk of sounding hyperbolic, I honestly believe this may be the most depressing novel I have ever read. It has been a long time since I've (if I've ever) so excessively cringed, tensed up, sighed from such unadulterated frustration, and chewed the insides of my mouth from stress while reading

Whenever I think I had a rough upbringing I read a book like this and realise I am a fluffed little pillow of good fortune. I was raised in a council tenement in a backwater semi-village in Central Scotland amid a backdrop of Protestant activism and spinster gossiping. But compared to Zola’s Paris i

This book (the French title is "L'Assommoir") is a depressing argument for sobriety. It's also a vivid slice of life in late 19th century Paris. Twenty-two year old Gervaise is deserted by her lover Lantier and left with two small sons. Supporting herself as a laundress, she soon marries Coupeau, a

الإنحدار .. القاع .. الهوة .. الحيوانية .. الشقاء .. الفقر .. الإدمان ..الفاقة ..المعاناة..اليأس..الجنون..الحسرة..الخيانة ..الذل..الهوان.. الإستغلال .. البغض .. الخمر .. الحسد.. ببساطة هذه هي رواية " إميل زولا " رواية من باريس العميقة..من باريس لا تشترك مع باريس التي نعرفها إلا في الإسم ,قصة إمرأة ع

Don't actually remember when I read this, it was sometime just after college. I had read Nana for a class and needed to follow it up. As I write this blurb I'm belatedly following up L'Assommoir with Germinal. You really can't lose with Zola. Unless you're one of his characters, in which case you'll


“A heavy man of forty was serving a ten year old girl who had asked him to place four sous' worth of brandy into her cup. A shaft of sunlight came through the entrance to warm the floor which was always damp from the smokers' spitting. From everything, the casks, the bar, the entire room, a liquoris

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