Honoré de Balzac

French writer

Honoré de Balzac ( BAL-zak, more commonly US: BAWL-, French: [ɔnɔʁe d(ə) balzak]; born Honoré Balzac; 20 May 1799 – 18 August 1850) was a French novelist and playwright. The novel sequence La Comédie humaine, which presents a panorama of post-Napoleonic French life, is generally viewed as his magnum opus. Owing to his keen observation of detail and unfiltered representation of society, Balzac is regarded as one of the founders of realism in European literature. He is renowned for his multi-faceted characters; even his lesser characters are complex, morally ambiguous and fully human. Inanimate objects are imbued with character as well; the city of Paris, a backdrop for much of his writing, takes on many human qualities. His writing influenced many famous writers, including the novelists Émile Zola, Charles Dickens, Gustave Flaubert, and Henry James, filmmaker François Truffaut as well as important philosophers such as Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx. Many of Balzac's works have been made into films, and they continue to inspire other writers. An enthusiastic reader and independent thinker as a child, Balzac had trouble adapting to the teaching style of his grammar school. His willful nature caused trouble throughout his life and frustrated his ambitions to succeed in the world of business. When he finished school, Balzac was apprenticed in a law office, but he turned his back on the study of law after wearying of its inhumanity and banal routine. Before and during his career as a writer, he attempted to be a publisher, printer, businessman, critic, and politician; he failed in all of these efforts. La Comédie Humaine reflects his real-life difficulties, and includes scenes from his own experience. Balzac suffered from health problems throughout his life, possibly due to his intense writing schedule. His relationship with his family was often strained by financial and personal drama, and he lost more than one friend over critical reviews. In 1850, Balzac married Ewelina Hańska, a Polish aristocrat and his longtime love; he died in Paris five months later.
Read more or edit on Wikipedia

influenced by: Honoré de Balzac

26

Author

Anton Chekhov

Russian dramatist, author and physician

Author

Guy de Maupassant cover

photo credits: CC-PD-Mark

Guy de Maupassant

French writer

Author

Émile Zola cover

photo credits: PD France

Émile Zola

French writer

Author

Fyodor Dostoyevsky cover

photo credits: CC-PD-Mark

Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Russian author

Author

Jack Kerouac cover

photo credits: CC-BY-SA-2.0

Jack Kerouac

American writer

you are offline