Jean-Christophe: Dawn, Morning, Youth, Revolt

Jean-Christophe: Dawn, Morning, Youth, Revolt

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Jean-Christophe: Dawn, Morning, Youth, Revolt

Jean-Christophe: Dawn, Morning, Youth, Revolt

Read FREE!

Excerpt

JEAN-CHRISTOPHE” is the history of the development of a musician of genius. the present volume comprises the first four volumes of the original French, viz.: “L’Aube,” “Le Matin,” “L’Adolescent,” and “La Révolte,” which are designated in the translation as Part IThe Dawn; Part iiMorning; Part iiiYouth; Part ivRevolt. Parts I and ii carry Jean-Christophe from the moment of his birth to the day when, after his first encounter with Woman, at the age of fifteen, he falls back upon a Puritan creed. Parts iii and iv describe the succeeding five years of his life, when, at the age of twenty, his sincerity, integrity, and unswerving honesty have made existence impossible for him in the little Rhine town of his birth. An act of open revolt against German militarism compels him to cross the frontier and take refuge in Paris, and the remainder of this vast book is devoted to the adventures of Jean-Christophe in France.

His creator has said that he has always conceived and thought of the life of his hero and of the book as a river. So far as the book has a plan, that is its plan. It has no literary artifice, no “plot.” the words of it hang together in defiance of syntax, just as the thoughts of it follow one on the other in defiance of every system of philosophy. Every phase of the book is pregnant with the next phase. It is as direct and simple as life itself, for life is simple when the truth of it is known, as it was known instinctively by Jean-Christophe. the river is explored as though it were absolutely uncharted. Nothing that has ever been said or thought of life is accepted without being brought to the test of Jean-Christophe’s own life. What is not true for him does not exist; and, as there are very few of the processes of human growth or decay which are not analyzed, there is disclosed to the reader the most comprehensive survey of modern life which has appeared in literature in this century.

To leave M. Rolland’s simile of the river, and to take another . . .

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