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Butor - Zola's Blue Flame

Butor - Zola's Blue Flame

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Butor - Zola's Blue Flame
Butor - Zola's Blue Flame

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Zola's Blue Flame Author(s): Michel Butor and Michael Saklad Reviewed work(s): Source: Yale French Studies

, No. 42, Zola (1969), pp. 9-25 Published by: Yale University Press Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2929503 . Accessed: 26/10/2012 03:40
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XXXIV (1967). characteristics of the Ancien Regime. of the founding affects each descendant Zola's physiological is of untoldwealth. metaphoric commentary containing some of themost highly poetic scenes of our author. For the Rougon-Macquart. is conThe hereditary characteristic of tainedin the blood. If its relation to the whole is examined. its presencewithina family. from whichflows wounds.one would imagination welcome a studyof him comparableto that of Micheletby Roland Barthes. the same blood beingpresentin all members one family. it is one of the roots of the notionof nobility. In Le DocteurPascal onlyone member ofthefifth generation prominently thischaracteristic. Furthermore. thoughdoubtlesspreviously apparent.is an intiof that special charactertraitwhich so deeply mate manifestation hero. 101-113. itwouldseem. 407-437. it emerges as an admirable. especiallythosecalled class "humours"are veryimportant. In truth thisredfluid. thedistinctive characteristic embodiedby Ad6laide Fouque. will onlybe passed on the lengthof timerequiredforthe fictional experiment.have notinherited *This article was originally published in Les Cahiers Naturalistes. Le Docteur Pascal plays almostthe same role as the Etudes philosophiquesin relationto la Comedie Humaine. There all the themesare brought and echoed in a together near-fantastic key. In Zola's works. It is reprinted here by permission of the author.MichelButor Zola's blue flame* of an unchangedcharacteristic The transfer fromperson to person down a family is one of the basic line. Blood inexhaustibly transmits thedistinctive characteristic among thenobility. A longer version of the article appeared in Critique. displays theothers. 9 .Fluids. CCXXXIX (1967).

to whichshe reMegot.lightas milk. Nevertheless.Adelaide Fouque's "blood" runsout withthedeathof youngCharles. intelligence He bore a striking resemblanceto his great-great-grandtanteDide. indication He bleeds freely from thesmallest scratch and especiallyfrom thenose. In thissense. .Yale FrenchStudies it.Justine aroundPlassans. Zola refersto this "royal" appearance. he was to be foundat the home of F6liciteor anotherrelative. goes mad afterseeingher grandsonSilvereMouretmurdered whenPierre Rougon takes power in Plassans. who are thelast of their line.. a nativeof the countryside and has two other turns witha pensionto raise him. cutting authorities.. nicknamedtante Dide. fulnesssimilarto one of those small anemic kingscrowned with longpale hair. The ancestressAd6laide Fouque.. Rougon. this illegitimate child withroyal blond hair caused muchpain to old Mme.delicategracemother.and withthepermission of the with her. . Charles is the son of Maxime Saccard and a domestic. . . and he stillhad thestammering of a five-year-old. Charlesis thentakento see her. She is locked away in the Tulettes asylum. Charles at the age of fifteen hardlyseemed twelveyearsold. he was of a slender. Every time he speaks of Charles. coquettishly dressed. His hemophilia is another of royalty. She has married children.buried in toys and livinglike the small effeminate dauphinof an extinct race. Whenever Charleswas not at his mother's house . he spends afternoons out drawingsof 10 . .

effort to cryout. finds buthisvoice is alreadyweakening.then.MichelButor soldiers.It was theblood. bothso well-behaved at theboy. on thefloor heavyand thick.thenanother theedge of thechild'sleftnostril.captains and especiallykings dressed in purple and gold.but one hot Augustday. all alone and flowing away in the flacciderosionof emerging flowing over the The dropsbecame a finetrickle degeneracy. gradually scendant. A glimmer appearsin theeyesof the ancestress. she makes a superhuman Ad6laide thenregainsall her lucidity. Usually thewatchwoman she thinksthem resemblance. as her own blood runsout. itswayto a corner of theroom. The old womangazes fixedly At first he starts to fallasleep: His lily whitehead seemed to bend under his overlyheavy the drawings amongst mane of regal hair. 11 . newdropsformed.butshe cannotmake a sound.She is almostparalyzed by the shock and looks on. one by one. Charles awakes. weakensbeforehereyes. himself coveredwithblood and calls out. thedew of theblood formed and followed with no bruise or contusionthis time. he let it fall gently and fell asleep withone cheek againstthe gold and purple kings.a red drop was flowing This dropfell. the extraordinary once again noticing thatshe takes advantageof thisto take a break. A small pool coveredthemand made gold of the drawings. it.but then all goes well. falling ofthetable. along An event had just occurred. Her royaldeherown likeness. which was forming. staysin the room.

lost theircolor. momentarily restores herspeech. Rougon and theillegitimate great-great-grandson who died "by his own hand. anemic amongsthis tousledroyal-blond his last breathuntilthe arrivalof Pascal. faded into a wan pink. like a spring. now seeminglyasleep and silent. the to her "race".and Charles had died without a quiver.his head resting of hair like one those small.and discovershis death.indirectly Plassans by histwo uncleswho are herown sons. theirlightwent out. Suddenly. The presenceof thesewitnesses Several timesshe shouts. His lips His lily-white noiselessly." Of coursethiswill lead to herown deathseveralhourslater.theybecame blank. It was the end. accompaniedby his mother out of Ad6laYde's niece Clotilde. the death of her poacherkilledby a gendarme foreign murdered favorite duringthe captureof grandsonSilvere.thelegitimate Pierre thedeathof this AntoineMacquart."the gendarme!"Three bloody deaths are superimposedin her mind: the death of her lover Macquart.lastly. was losing his fromhis veins endlessly. 12 . in the blood. It was flowing skin turneddeathlypale.emptied whosewaterhas flowedaway. He lies there"divinely handsome. The dauphins" breathing F6liciteRougon and his doctorcomes in. He opens his eyes forthelast time.the running blood.almost last blood.Yale FrenchStudies Charles.Withher own eyes Ad6laide can see his becoming blank. and finallyturned white. the death of the eyes.

We themagain in thesecondof thefourEvangiles.Of Jerome so manydisastersand an entire He seemed to have survived the of blessed and cursedpersonsonlyto understand family beforegoing point." In the scene in Le Docteur Pascal. mostimportant thelong agonyof a man who.Travail.On the day of awakening. awarenessis the awarenessof guilt. . willencounter in front of thesmokyruinof his standing Qurignon. whenold Jerome to tell them his entirelife.MichelButor and the lucidityand speech regained The shock of recognition by theheavy after manyyearsof absencehave alreadybeen suggested gaze of the old woman duringthe last pages of ThereseRaquin.. yearshe had not said a word.he unfolded believed in his race rooted deep in the empirehe founded.It is punctuated mustgiveback . to shoutdistinct long speech seems to growout of Ad6laide's Jerome Qurignon's "We mustgiveback . to us thatthe"gendarme" represents Zola says: Quirignon.present illuminating of struggle. we by therefrain twowords.thismindwhichslowlyawakwherethestory would be divulgedin a thatsoon everything ened threatening lips were truth ifthe alreadystammering wave of overflowing words. an entire century was thismind thing of a family! And whata frightening future seemedto sleep. survived long enoughto see the race and empireblown away And he said whyhe was passing of the future. Zola explains This sudden thelaw of atonement. gathersa few people together factory. . judgment 13 . the winds by and whyhe was makingamends. .having to hisdeath.and whata seriesof horrible year-old and thepast. forthirty although storedin thehead of thiseighty-sevenstory What a frightful factsto summarize man.

into which not only young Charles is drained and then of the Rougon-Macquart. Ad6laide or Jerome. Thus. is guilty of is everything silence. how could poor Ad6laide suffer from thesame but this feelings? Of course. incarnation in terms of thosepersonsbeingstudied.insists it disappear. withits long periodsof and silence.His who does not share the blood she has so closely mother.Yale FrenchStudies If Jerome Qurignonsuffers fromindividual guiltas the founder of an industrial empire.during staring whichit recordseverything said and done is the first of the original by its execrable descendants.How could itbe channeled intogenius? vice.letus onlydiscussthoseforwhomhe uses 14 .whichcan suddenly restore in all individuals in whose bodies flowsthis"differspeech.revolt. drownedbut also the hereditary difference the reports. It is notAd6laYde thepersonwho is guilty. is sharedby different The unity. In Travail. the bloodystain. If the otherindividualsare coincide withthe first the gaze of the forefathers on accountof its activelyguilty. in relation But.is present ent" blood.the same "personality" individuals.WhatCharlesridshimself thatkeptAd6laYde fromspeaking.Conspicuousguilt. the evidenceabout theentire represents family so scrupulously accumulated by Doctor Pascal Rougon in his large closet. words of speech. butrather her"blood".FMlicite." adjectivecannotapplyto herwho is theancestor par excellence. on washing thisstainand making espoused.littleCharles has "execrable ancestors. "ce lac de sang hantepar de mauvais anges" . The last drops of guilty blood Corneilledid not say it any differently. distinctive characteristic (first theremay have been previousincarnations such as the first Qurignon or Ad6laide's father).In the thereis a hereditary Rougon-Macquartas in the Qurignonfamily. There is no doubt that Zola himself feltstainedby just such a whichin variouscircumstances and settings difference could become crimeor genius.Jerome of all hisknowledge Qurignon delivers himself of his guilty and of the complete history family. gaze of the forefathers. It would certainly be fascinating to studyall themanyreflections and characters in the Rougon-Macquart representative of the author to theothers.

becomes veryordinary in him. No longeris thereany sign in theexecrableand sometimes nothof his membership gifted family. It is not because of his hereditary geniusthatDoctor Pascal his documentation and writes the of theRougon-Maccollects history the history because he writes thatthe hereditary quart.but it is rather in becomes him difference completely unrecognizable and turnsinto pure genius. Then thereis Pascal.thisis the reasonforwhichon Charles' death. an unsuccessful yetgifted Lantier.the family suddenlyappearsso royal. Zola is knownto have taken the name MonsieurPascal during theexile in London following the "Dreyfus affair.MichelButor in manyways theword"genius.a genius is undercontrol. in new form." if thereis some geniusin Doctor Pascal. indeed. "whenneurosis Claude showsauthentic of the author. of Doctor Lucas as adoptedby Zola. 15 . with ing separateshim fromthose of anotherblood. he conNevertheless."Thereis Claude Lantier.something quiteunexpected at first glance. sinceall Second Empire France confessesand emptiesits guiltyblood in it and through it. though. the genius.to a more general type. but one carrying its genius it. The difference.thepainter inspired by Cezanne."Thereis also Doctor Pascal. ofLa Faute de l'abbe'Mouretdemonstrates However. certainly. Zola than his otherrepresentation the authorPierreSandoz. This is an execrablefamily. symbolizing redemption and resurrection. means the signsof heredity are no longerrecognizable in him and thatwithhim thereis a return.a rereading how sensitiveZola was to the medieval idea of man as masterof creation. at least in appearance.butmoreby Zola thanby Cezanne. last figuration one who has succeededin writing books.his childhoodfriend. moredeeply in l'Oeuvre. sidershimself a perfect in thelanguage exampleof "innateness" which. all its advantagesforsome of thosehavingit.It is an irreplaceable within family.

the their kingdom weretheirs. withsuch admirablequalities.thestreams withits monstrous plants.any disappearsfrom hereditary appearingoutsidethisline.as soon as some usurproyalty. as to all nineteenth ofusurpation.can remarkable individual a dangerto thosein powerand is thusseen to be remarkonlypresent and mostof the time ablybad."so humanand filled is worsethanthatof an animal.had quiveredunderthe weightof their bodies. theCatholicChurchplaysan essential on earth with thepromise of a kingdom in heaven.. of the Rougon-Macquartunfoldsagainst a The entirehistory To Zola. be legitimate The fateof JacquesLantier. the"humananimal.They had sovereignly takenpossessionof it. considered as absoAnd ifthe permanence by nobility and if after severalgenerations extremely temporary.insteadof havinga positivevalue.is in reality thereigning difference thepositive line.. itis onlynecessary thattheblood no longer or thata personbe a Macquart ratherthan a Rougon.Yale FrenchStudies However. to consolidating contributes ence. and thisterrible even overtherocks.. century writers..forinstance. theloss ofa kingdom would have gained thosewho underothercircumstances Furthermore find themselves in farworsecondition. himon thethrone is totally theman replacing unworthy. can lead to crime. the crowdof animalsobedientto them. The grassenlarged grassand waters unrolling silverrugs beforethem. at this hour the entirepark was theirs. are relegated to therankof mere thedispossessed role by masking animals. background 16 .. The same heredibyusurpation tarystain. even a genius. lute. Theyruledeverywhere.. Albineand Sergewalked Onlytheplantshad notsurrendered. werethegreatest earthwhich.Here. On the meadows.the waters by continually oftheir pleasures.. However.whichsupports thisvariation to the advantageof a family line.. The deposedkingbecomesa monster.vice and madness. thenotion ofnobility. regallythrough to be of a positive difference allows an individual The emergence in thatdifferA certain permanence thesole possessorof thisroyalty. of blood..

"especiallythatrepresented back thefortune by the "Abyss" (the name of his factory)in which. When they arrivethe dog is continually.Just before taking to theTulettes wherehe will Charles. "Macquart! Macquart!" No one answers. In Le DocteurPascal thisscene is thedirect resultand. the originaldistinctive trait.from thisink theyare drawn. family disgrace. task of hergrandson.old Antoine the at his Macquart. equallyextraordinary scene. 17 . who has inherited onlyher gaze. thechildhas justcutout. yet quietlymoaning. all is dark. we mustgiveback.MichelButor Napoleon was obviouslya genius.and the kitchen is filled with thicknauseating smoke. the doctorvisitshis illegitimate uncle." and in the contextof Travail we know this means.if indeed it remained recognizable. theoutcomeof another. The coup of thesecondof Decemberwas an absoluteusurpation d'e'tat whichof in thedehumanization necessity resulted of millions of people.Usingheredity fornovas a technique pictures elistic experimentation should help abolish kings forever. "We must give we have usurped. In youngCharles' death he too sees the need to give back.Through theblood of theRougon-Macquart. Several timesthe doctor calls out. Old Qurignon repeats.thevery mineshaft oftheworkers is devoured."We mustgiveback.To theirmindthis explained and almostexcused his seizureof power. in a way. the blood of all royalor imperial lines should be consumedin forming the characters whichmake up the novels.He opens the door. asylum lose all his blood.In his spurioussuccessorNapoleon III.accompanied by Clotilde. hideawaywherehe spends his days drinking. humanity this is the Old Ad6laide does not recounther family's history.He opens theshutters.as in the "Voreux" (the in Germinal). Doctor Pascal. give men Drownedin thebloodstainare all the kingswhose back their royalty. on the otherhand. manifested itself entirely differently.

Only the chairthe uncle had probablysat legs wereblackened.. . a black pipe." It is a case of "spontaneous wellhe is deep in myth.withfoldedwings.All thatremainedof him was containedin thishandfulof lightashes.What had become of the ofthechairon thetilefloor. had he gone?In front uncle. which hadn't even brokenwhen it fell.however. next to it lay the pipe. ing of himremained Far from alarmedbythisscene. repulsive thefinest. (Once And so he died royally like theprinceof drunkards again note this "royally") ."Nothto buryin it. it is revealedthathe had of his tomb. a toothor a nothing except this small pile of graydust which fingernail.not a bone. and nothing remainedof him. The glass and theempty thing were on the table.. thefront on showedany signsof thefire. He knowsperfectly a doctor ."a superbtomb wealthto theerection assignedhis entire of marblewithtwoenormous crying angels. Zola tellsus. and the strawseat was halfburned. . thedraft from thedoorway threatened to blow away.Everybottle proofspirit was in place. . WhenAntoineMacquart's will is read. He was also presentin cloud floating out the open windowand in the reddish-brown thelayerofsootwhich kitchen. a horrible had coatedtheentire everything.Doctor Pascal is amazed: . viscous and fleshcovering grease of transformed to thetouch.only a small heap of ashes remained. .Yale FrenchStudies The doctorwas astonished by what he thennoticed. has everwitnessed.where stainedby a pool of grease. combustion. burningof his own flame. 18 .

Clotilde'sgrandmother and Charles' great-grandmother. Unfortunately. "Look. This murder. due to an oversight on the part of his half-sister-in-law seemingly beenplannedfora longtime. to the hideawaynear the asylumshe had been giving himpresents of the family of an objecwine. in fact.on thatvery hotAugustday when she arrived. all was quiet." When burying "old. theyboth realize that F6licite Rougon. but he picks up something else which his niece.a shred. Clotilde. But this is an admirabledeath! To disappearand leave no tracebut a smallheap of ashes and a pipe lying nearby! The doctorpicksup thepipe in orderto keep "a relic.Since he had moved Felicite. you rememlast night." she shouts. This is how the murder of old Antoinetook place. had just noticedunderthetable. After administering thedose she deemedsufficient and thenputting a stop to thistypeof "generosity." shehad to facea longwait.. dirtylinen and the blood and mud of the two conquests of To do away withold Plassans. had. drinkseems to do wonders foritsvictim by restoring his vitality. Antoineis thesame forheras doingawaywiththewritings of her son."it's grandmother's glove.However. Doctor Pascal's mother. a woman'sgreenglove.. She admitsthisa fewmoments laterwhentheymeether at theasylumjust beforethe child'sdeath. "Macquart! Macquart!" and entered thedarkkitchen. . 19 ." ber.thegloveshe couldn'tfind Then.MichelButor burning away in theblazingpyreof hisownbody." We knowsuch a burialis impossible. had been presentat the combustion to of old Antoineand didn'tattempt prevent it. at the beginning Pascal.a scrap.."he says.liqueursand brandyin hope of "ridding him she would have buried both tionable old man. . She too called out.

whicha small blue flamewas rising. showedhis naked thigh. she sees his breathing makinghis chestrise and fall.not to awakenhimthistimebut to be sure. washes a glass and fillsit withwater. fortheshort.She is thirsty.He was sitting bottle empty proofspirit table witha glass and a completely on it.already the size of a onefrom a red thigh. to melt. At first it was his underwear.if he is reallydying.light bursting alcohol. she clearlysaw the exposed fleshand the smallblue forth flame from and dancingas a flamedartit. dumbfounded. his shortsor Felicite thought his shirtwhichwere burning. she finally caughtsightof the uncle. and hispantshad caughtfire. theskinwas cracking and the rapidly growing larger.Justwhenshe is about to take a drink she stops. fatwas beginning He is stillalive. Then.She calls his name. hardlyhigherthan a pilot flameburning it was so weak the slightest breeze made it flicker. It was ing across the surfaceof a glass of flaming quietlyyet silently.therewas no doubt about it. It was though. it seemed to permeatethe to thedim entire house.Yale FrenchStudies Her firstsensationwas only that she was chokingon the violent stench of alcoholfilling theroom.She feelswarm and removesher gloves. 20 . hundred sous coin. She stood motionless thepipe. She acts as thoughhe isn't there. and puts the filledglass down next to her gloves: She had just noticed that he had probably fallen asleep his pipe. The burning his lap.Everypiece of furniture seemed to exude this odor. However. He is sleepingand doesn'thear her. bacco had spilledfrom Througha hole in the material. whilesmoking black pipe had fallenin toin amazement.as hereyesbecame accustomed at a light. thatthereis no chancehe willwake up.

F6licite pliesAntoinewithdrink to obliterate himfrom thefamily. On stageremain thesignatures of thetwo actors.thegloveand thepipe. an event. A feminine articlepar excellenceconnected withall thevestiary symbolism whichcan be seenin Au Bonheurdes dames.MichelButor F6liciteRougon. despiteall. Once theconcealing alcohol has burned away. the Macquart branch.theglovewhichwas to conceal theguilty hand becomesincriminating.ifdestruction Macquart. In his "royal" death old Antoinebecomes a low-burning flame like old. livingAd6laide.thinking she has both. waiting to destroyall his alcohol.theglove coversthehandand tries to conceal theorigins of an act.in other 21 . ofAntoine However.then hurriedly picksup one gloveand. In thesame and theirhirelings way employers do everything to encouragealcoholism amongminers. encouraging others to reconquer their royalty and lost humaneness. forthisis thebestwayto keep differences. this accomplicein usurpation. from turning into revolt. announces his own death. The blue flameburning old AntoineMacquart is in factbut the of anotherflame.The masculine thepipe whichold Antoinealwayscarriedwithhim. thefactthatthisdestruction takes place in a blue flameby the spontaneouscombustion of alcohol will also destroy thisconcealment. strengthening ofitsreign. reassuredthat at least this incarnation of the family shameis dying.permits concealment and. in one branch.signedbythegreen of the shame of the Rougon family glove. his writings. which appearin certain individuals suchas EtienneLantier. The blood flowing from one individual to another within a family is.closes thedoor and flees.we know the role it Alcohol characterizes plays in L'Assommoirand Germinal. In him a flamesecretly smoulders. article.partially offset by the flowof alcohol in whichit is bathed. through manuscripts and papers.This is the flamewhichwill burnDoctor harbinger Pascal in effigy. drinks downherglass ofwaterin one gulp. all that which marksthis henchman.In a way it worksagainstblood the hereditary by preventing characteristic fromemerging.

. though. She was overcome by a fury.. Into thefire! Into thefire! She had just foundthe papers. behindthe pile of notes. in a firefanned by the angry hand of old F6licite.continuedthe small old woman who in stature. Will thisfireremain soot... thedoctorhad hiddentheblue folders. corpseof heruncle. They'reburning. it's so beautiful! A fire burnsin thatnevercleanedchimney at a certain producing It awakenspoor Clotildeasleep near the pointa rumble like thunder.. willitbe possibleto seal itsashes in thewonderful monument to the Rougons' fortune? Let's see whether we can finda greenglove 22 . seemedto be growing thatI onlyhad one ambition. Well.. . . Far in back. They'refinally burning! . . of our family... heretheyare. one desire. Ah. they'reburning!..thewealthand royalty Like the kitchenof old Antoinethe room is fullof smoke and she is victorious once again..Yale FrenchStudies words the Rougon-Macquartthemselves as novels. a frenzy to destroy thepapers she pickedup by the handful and threw intotheflames.. I would the glory of our family! have burnedthetownto protect You know. . They'reburning. F6licitethinks a secret.and she criesout: It's as though you just burnedyourson. And F6liciteanswers: Burn Pascal because I burnedhis papers! .

his priesthood since entering Serge Mouret. in impenetrable withits enorretreat the entire world.. thatthe two arsonists. it is forbidden.. thought to look forit there..MichelButor on the table..hiddendeep you thatthere beautiful so marvelously brush..be it a permanent in whichwe see thetreeof Paradou in La Faute de labbe' or lightning. The shade of the tree has a charm whichinducesdeath.interrupts to sit under a tree whose shade has such Isn't it forbidden powers? strange Albine says solemnly: Everyonearound here has told me it's Yes.. forbidden.who has forgotten her: the garden. I was toldthat moustreecovering a wholelifecould be livedtherein thespace of a minute.. 23 . It is thereshe is buried... family Thusthewholewretched flame family thatstemsnotonlygeniusbutthistree.. What fewpeople know is thatin the gardentheyhad found a spotof totalbliss. A place of cool shadows. thissame yetitis from must burn.. It stands out so clearlyin the untouchedfamilytree haven'teven F6liciteand Martinethe servant.. Mouret...an enchanted forget itwitha roofof leaves. It was thehappinessof havingsat therewhich killed her..

allowingus to immerse through royalty. of distilled miraculous cureswithsimpleinjections stilllife: thepipe on the Let us look once again at thisadmirable old man floor. willgrowoldertheretogether.bathing miraclesin Lourdes waterwhicheffects in La Joie de vivre. Thus our revolt our blood."wateras mother of the Paradou tree. I must blood and neutralizing usurpative system.in thelast moments Pascal. thebark thesap thatflows from seminal water. but simply notbecause theVirginwillsthem.wouldcreateentirely of sheep's brain achieves almost afterfailing withall his extractions water.The first role in theworkings important of Le Docteur callythe milkwithwhichClotilde.yetilluminate ourselvesin the baptismal calmness. who searchesfor alchemist Doctor Pascal. circulatory that have an equally fluids two other beneficial at least fluids. theonlyrealcause of all illness. chapteron wet nursesin Fecondite The role of milkin the striking Secondly. supremely it witha "fertile mist. new and superior and willpower. water. waterof rediscovered humoursthat flowin society's If I have discussedtwo harmful alcohol. humandebility. tificFountainof Youth whichby providing men. the deserves further investigation. bottleof proofspirit 24 .her son by her uncle.Yale FrenchStudies in the middleof the new This is the tree we will findgrowing thefirst of Zola's Evangiles. inhabitants While readingthe Rougon-Macquartall the alcohol whichhas begunto flowin our veinsmustbe burnedin orderto free insidiously willbecome mosteffective it. the twentieth-century of lifewhichwill fight against theuniversal panacea. nourishesthat happy familyenigma.Both treeand parcelofland in Fe'condite'. vitalmedium.curative because it is water.on the chairthe blue flameintowhichthe intoxicated the empty next to table on the the glove green is beingmetamorphosed. thefluid a sciena true. and theglass of water. mention is milk. and above all.specifiof thenovels. health strength.

At the death of Now we understand AntoineMacquartwaterprovesto be thetrueelixirof longlifeforhis to and forthatfamily's "distinctive characteristic" vile "royal"family which it clung. that inexhaustible It alone and blood frombecomingusurpation.intothelightof day. hereditary differences thehereditary thewater.MichelButor the role whichwaterplays. that keeps of alcohol but of ink. F6licitethought not simply It is onlythe blue flameproducedby the combustion super-alcohol. to which it devoted body and soul and which old she possessedforall time. community brings Translated byMichael Saklad 25 .

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