Complete summary of Honoré Balzac’s Sarrasine. novella begins, the narrator is attending an evening reception given by Count and Countess de Lanty. Sarrasine The narrator is out of sight in a window seat at a ball. As he contemplates the garden he hears bits and pieces of various. Honoré de Balzac (–) may be best known as a novelist, yet he was also a prolific and skilled writer of short stories and novellas.

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Sarrasine then goes to Rome, burning with ambition. Honod completely sumptuous and an entirely immersing reading experience. A little dissent here, I really enjoyed Sarrasine. La toile se leva. Inanimate objects are imbued with character as well; the city of Paris, a backdrop for much of his writing, takes on many human qualities.

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After one of Sarrasine’s sculptures wins a competition, he heads to Rome where he sees a theatre performance featuring Zambinella. Return to Book Page. Do you think we should add this list as a page here as a reference too?

Finally able to talk to La Zambinella in private, Sarrasine speaks of love. He falls in love with her, going to all of her performances and creating a clay mold of her.

I know with some I like them much better on the reread. Barthes dissects the text in accordance with five “codes” hermeneuticsemic, symbolic, proairetic and cultural. Early speculation about this fades; the two children, Marianina and Filippo are both beautiful and rich and therefore valuable assets on the marriage market. Realism tends to describe middle or lower class milieux in order to paint a picture of the regular life of a majority of the population at the time the literature was written.


The Narrator – The narrator tells the story of Sarrasine to Madame Rochefide, as a way to seduce her. Balzac suffered from health problems throughout his life, possibly due to his intense writing schedule.

That night he sketched La Zambinella from memory and the next day hired a box at the opera for the remainder of the season. The story ends with Mme de Rochefide’s expressing her distress about the story she has just been told.

Sarrasine – Wikipedia

The author depicts real and imperfect emotions between the two characters, from love to vengeance. Sarrasine bravely carries La Zambinella to a private boudoir.

Zambinella recovers enough to finish sarrasune aria but refuses to sing anything else. And do you not know what sort of creatures play female parts within the domains of the Pope? A lot going in this packed little read that begins slowly and builds to an exciting and dramatic crescendo. They come into close contact with a mysterious old man and see a beautiful painting.

Mais non, tu vivras. From there he is led to a brilliantly lit salon but is disappointed honpr find it crowded with performers and others when he was hoping for a tete-a-tete.

Be careful what you honr for? Le cardinal Cicognara est son protecteur, et ne badine pas. Jul 06, Emy rated it liked it Shelves: And friendship — does that even exist?

Blue of Noontrans. Whatever the case, he could have gotten to the point a bit early on. After only two weeks in Italy he saw a crowd outside the Argentina theatre and entered to see the show.

Le cardinal Cicognara trompe le pape sarasine toute la ville de Rome! No one knows the history of the Lanty family but they are accepted into Society because of their great wealth.


As the singer looks at Sarrasine his voice falters and he trembles. Sarrasine sits beside La Zambinella at supper and finds her timid and modest toward him. Sarrasine makes many references and allusions to other sources, often to literature Lord ByronAnn RadcliffeJean-Jacques Rousseaumusic Gioacchino Rossinireligion, and the arts Girodet ‘s EndymionMichelangelo. She advises him not to speak thusly of her and to cease coming to the theatre. Elle leva les yeux au ciel.

It was I, monsieur, who endowed Zambinella with his voice. And the objectification inherent in physical attraction is very much the point here, linked as it is to the process of art. I never really got this one either. Because Zambinella has the voice of a woman Sarrasine assumes La Zambinella is a woman. Apr 30, Tracey rated it really liked it Shelves: January 3, at 2: July 20, at This is further complicated by the fact that the story takes place in an old mansion. I may be in the minority in not caring a lot for it.

Giacomo though Way too much of a backstory man! The story of Sarrasine is made much more believable by the fact that, due to their severe hormonal imbalance, castrati often developed real breast tissue, a condition called gynecomastia. Zambinella does, in fact, have a partner: