Against the Grain by Joris-Karl Huysmans. The Ultimate Example of “Decadent” Literature Translated by John Howard. Against Nature or Against the Grain. À rebours (translated into English as Against Nature or Against the Grain) () is a novel by the French writer Joris-Karl Huysmans. Its narrative concentrates. The Project Gutenberg EBook of Against The Grain, by Joris-Karl Huysmans This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no.

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Yet, as biased as his opinions are, they are at least consistent. He has a garden of semi-pornographically described carnivorous plants.

Huymans views his protagonist with devastating irony, particularly in the frequent juxtaposition of grandiose schemes with physical illnesses and practical and psychological failings. View all 66 comments. Jun 01, Evan rated it it was amazing Shelves: Alain de Botton writes that the reality of travel seldom matches our dreams.

Keep Exploring Britannica Lord Byron. And the chapter on perfume.

Against the Grain by J.-K. Huysmans – Free Ebook

This was not nearly as much fun as his barn-burning and sexy Satan-worshippers novel, “The Damned,” which I read earlier this year – but this book, in its own way was just as good. He conducts a survey of French and Latin literature, rejecting the works approved by the mainstream critics of his day. Post was not sent – check your email addresses!

Like most unifying principles, it hangs together with spit and gum, but the unifier doesn’t realize that. Well, I can honestly say I’ve never read anything like it, nor have I encountered a character as oddly loveable and annoying as Des Esseintes.

He has lived among the intellectuals agaunst found them petulant and arrogant. Anthony,” for Des Esseintes–the novel’s protagonist–is a saint of the senses, and on his path to enlightenment he encounters demons, delusions and disease.


At the end of the novel, after spending six months or so living as a recluse, his health deteriorates to such an extent that the doctor orders him to return to Paris. Looking on the bright side of things, I hope that, one fine day, he’ll kill the gentlemen who turns up unexpectedly just as he’s breaking open his desk. The book is not unlike a laundry list: Jiris-karl all 21 comments.

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I studied the Decadent period as part of my first degree, many years ago, but I only remember parts in isolation. Yet, ironically, he also complains about how there is ‘nothing genuine’ left in the world, how it is all artificial for which he decries it despite the fact that he spends the rest of his time trying to live in another artificial world of his own making.

Learn more about Amazon Giveaway. He is the prototype for the man who sits and plays Warcraft alone all jiris-karl, every day, until he loses his job, his friends, and his family.

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Buy the selected items together Jorix-karl item: Oxford World’s Classics edition translated by Margaret Mauldon I finally read this properly in one go PaperbackPenguin Classicspages. From a literary point of view, you could assemble from the details of his library a reading list more erudite and filled with “the consoling beacons of ancient faith” than anything compiled by den Grossenlistengenerator Steven Moore view spoiler [ it’s telling that it could be said, even then, as now, that the compilers of such lists like the work of one of Des E’s idols, Ernest Hello have often “affected wgainst pretensions of profundity.

A classic “novel”–though re-reading it this time, I was struck by the genre-blending that goes on in the joris-katl. Incomprehensible successes had permanently ruined books and paintings for him which he had previously held dear; faced with widespread public approbation, he ended up discovering imperceptible flaws in works, and rejecting them…. Even in some of its more abstruse ways the book is comfortable: If the hero of this novel had a more anglo-friendly name, it would be the byword for hyper-neurotic aesthete dandies, as Sherlock Holmes is in the world of detective.


They are a subculture, but one that still feeds into and supports the main culture.

Wilde was not the only one who saw a kindred spirit in Huysmans: It’s a sad book, gorgeously written, one of my favorites.

This is a deep, rich work, and–although it is a classic representative of the fin de siecle–it transcends its age and has the ability to speak to ours as well.

I could hardly imagine anything more wonderful whilst I was reading it, but every now and again Againsf paused, and the pause turned into hours or a day or two as I realised retrospectively a feeling of sensory overload.

The last of a Hapsburg-esque line of ancestors, he’s a misanthropic aristocrat ailing from generations of inbreeding and a life of excess and immobility, warped from being forever consumed with his own thoughts and nothing else. It is a life without risk, a life where he huhsmans not have to confront anything uncomfortable or challenging, which will never hazard upsetting or drawing judgment from anyone–a pointless life of perfect safety which he romantically paints as fraught and challenging, because it allows him to imagine himself as the jori-skarl struggler against hardship–but solely on his own terms.

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Yet at first glance it is rather difficult to see why this book should have exerted such a powerful fascination over its readers. This site uses cookies. Huysmans [Huysmans converted or reverted to Catholicism in

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