A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy

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Createspace Independent Pub, 09.10.2014 - 82 Seiten
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A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy by Laurence Sterne. The novel was extremely popular and influential and helped establish travel writing as the dominant genre of the second half of the 18th century. Unlike prior travel accounts which stressed classical learning and objective non-personal points of view, A Sentimental Journey emphasized the subjective discussions of personal taste and sentiments, of manners and morals over classical learning. Throughout the 1770s female travel writers began publishing significant numbers of sentimental travel accounts. Sentiment also became a favorite style among those expressing non-mainstream views including political radicalism. The narrator is the Reverend Mr. Yorick, who is slyly represented to guileless readers as Sterne's barely disguised alter ego. The book recounts his various adventures, usually of the amorous type, in a series of self-contained episodes. The book is less eccentric and more elegant in style than Tristram Shandy and was better received by contemporary critics. It was published on 27 February, and on 18 March Sterne died.'I had scarce uttered the words, when a poor monk of the order of St. Francis came into the room to beg something for his convent. No man cares to have his virtues the sport of contingencies — or one man may be generous, as another is puissant; — sed non quoad hanc — or be it as it may, — for there is no regular reasoning upon the ebbs and flows of our humours; they may depend upon the same causes, for aught I know, which influence the tides themselves: 'twould oft be no discredit to us, to suppose it was so: I'm sure at least for myself, that in many a case I should be more highly satisfied, to have it said by the world, “I had had an affair with the moon, in which there was neither sin nor shame,” than have it pass altogether as my own act and deed, wherein there was so much of both.— But, be this as it may, — the moment I cast my eyes upon him, I was predetermined not to give him a single sous; and, accordingly, I put my purse into my pocket — buttoned it — set myself a little more upon my centre, and advanced up gravely to him; there was something, I fear, forbidding in my look: I have his figure this moment before my eyes, and think there was that in it which deserved better.The monk, as I judged by the break in his tonsure, a few scattered white hairs upon his temples, being all that remained of it, might be about seventy; — but from his eyes, and that sort of fire which was in them, which seemed more temper'd by courtesy than years, could be no more than sixty:— Truth might lie between — He was certainly sixty-five; and the general air of his countenance, notwithstanding something seem'd to have been planting-wrinkles in it before their time, agreed to the account.'

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LibraryThing Review

Nutzerbericht  - john257hopper - LibraryThing

This 250 year old novel was a fictional satire on a more serious non-fictional account of a journey through France and Italy by Sterne's contemporary Tobias Smollett. The satire is in the fact that ... Vollständige Rezension lesen

LibraryThing Review

Nutzerbericht  - Marse - LibraryThing

A Sentimental Journey is the story of a man traveling from England to France and back and his adventures, or should I say, his encounters during the trip. We don't get a lot of "travel" descriptions ... Vollständige Rezension lesen

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Über den Autor (2014)

If Fielding showed that the novel (like the traditional epic or drama) could make the chaos of life coherent in art, Sterne only a few years later in The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman (1760--67) laughed away the notion of order. In Sterne's world, people are sealed off in their own minds so that only in unpredictable moments of spontaneous feeling are they aware of another human being. Reviewers attacked the obscenity of Tristram's imagined autobiography as it was published (two volumes each in 1759, early 1761, late 1761, 1765, and one in 1767), particularly when the author revealed himself as a clergyman, but the presses teemed with imitations of this great literary hit of the 1760s. Through the mind of the eccentric hero, Sterne subverted accepted ideas on conception, birth, childhood, education, and the contemplation of maturity and death, so that Tristram's concerns touched his contemporaries and are still important. Since Tristram Shandy is patently a great and lasting comic work that yet seems, as E. M. Forster said, "ruled by the Great God Muddle," much recent criticism has centered on the question of its unity or lack of it; and its manipulation of time and of mental processes has been considered particularly relevant to the problems of fiction in our day. Sterne's Sentimental Journey (1768) has been immensely admired by some critics for its superb tonal balance of irony and sentiment. His Sermons of Mr. Yorick (1760) catches the spirit of its time by dramatically preaching benevolence and sympathy as superior to doctrine. Whether as Tristram or as Yorick, Sterne is probably the most memorably personal voice in eighteenth-century fiction.

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