Villette (Collins Classics)

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9780007449415: Villette (Collins Classics)

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‘Sleep went quite away. I used to rise in the night, look round for her, beseech her earnestly to return. A rattle of the window, a cry of the blast only replied – Sleep never came!’

Based on Charlotte Brontë’s own experiences as a governess in Brussels, her last novel tells the story of lonely Lucy Snowe who finds employment at a girls’ boarding school in the town of Villette. Finding the students challenging and experiencing the pain of unrequited love for the first time, Lucy becomes increasingly isolated in a world governed by societal expectation and struggles to maintain her integrity in the face of her envious and watchful employer, Madame Beck.

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Review:

"Kate Lawson's edition of Villette is expansive and precise, like the novel it contextualizes and introduces so well. Providing a rich analysis of the complex themes of the novel, the introduction at once acknowledges and limns the text's resistance to codification and carefully suggests the beautiful patterns in its seeming inconsistencies. The primary materials provide further context for the novel, particularly in regards to the 'Woman Question.' Arranged to be in dialogue with each other about this pivotal topic, these materials provide the background necessary for understanding the novel's involvement with those discussions."--Gail Turley Houston

About the Author:

Much-loved English author Charlotte Brontë published her first semi-autobiographical novel about a governess, Jane Eyre in 1847. Despite her critique of society’s treatment of impoverished women, Jane Eyre became an immediate literary classic which she later followed with her novels Shirley and Vilette.

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