Publication details [#14179]

White, Nicolas. 1997. Reconstructing the City in Zola's Paris. Neophilologus 81 (2) : 201–214. 14 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
Cham: Springer


This article proposes an interesting reading of Zola’s Paris, the last novel of the trilogy Les Trois Villes (Lourdes, Rome and Paris). In this novel, Zola looks for a solution to find an appropriate metaphor for Paris. He also envisages a crisis in the Naturalist plot’s powers of assimilation because of the numerous urban plots within a readable format and an epistemological crisis about anarchism and Catholicism. In particular, White exemplifies this situation using an analogy between the crisis of the established family order caused by incest and the anarchic escalation of socio-political hierarchy.