Maxime Goergen on Zola’s pastoral city

Paris, the last volume of the Three Cities trilogy by Émile Zola (1898), is both a utopian rewriting of Paris’ romantic myth as well as an attempt to make sense of, and go beyond, the city’s revolutionary past. This article explores how Zola’s novel uses specific metaphoric fields (the field, the machine) and intertexts to symbolically transform the urban space into an abstract principle of progress, resulting in a pastoral and scientific dematerialization of the city.

Read the full article here.

Dr Maxime Goergen is a lecturer in French Studies at the University of Sheffield.