Literary Classics

The Saga of Gösta Berling (Penguin Classics) by Selma Lagerlöf

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By Selma Lagerlöf

100 years in the past, Selma Lagerlöf turned the 1st girl to win the Nobel Prize in Literature. She guaranteed her position in Swedish letters with this sweeping historic epic, her first and best-loved novel, and the foundation for the 1924 silent movie of an identical identify that introduced Greta Garbo to stardom. Set in 1820s Sweden, it tells the tale of a defrocked minister named Gösta Berling. After his urge for food for alcohol and former indiscretions finish his occupation, Berling unearths a house at Ekeby, an ironworks property owned via Margareta Celsing, the "Majoress," that still homes and collection of eccentric veterans of the Napoleanic Wars. Berling's defiant and poetic spirit proves magnetic to a string of girls, who fall lower than his spell opposed to the backdrop of political intrigue at Margareta's property and the great wintry great thing about rural Sweden.

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Extra resources for The Saga of Gösta Berling (Penguin Classics)

Example text

He is nursed by his brother William and William舗s wife, Alice, and the three return to North America. William, also ill, dies shortly thereafter. James visits New York, where he receives psychiatric care. 1911 In August he returns to England. 1914 James begins work on two novels, The Ivory Tower and The Sense of the Past, which he will not complete before his death. 1915 James舗s health deteriorates. He becomes a British subject. 1916 On New Year舗s Day he receives the Order of Merit. On February 28 Henry James dies.

James made no substantive textual changes in the New York Edition of Wings comparable, for example, to what he did with The Portrait of a Lady, in which he made significant alterations, including most notably changes in the novel舗s ending, or with some of the other works that he drastically revised. In Wings, in addition to correcting mistakes, he sharpened the language of the text, by substituting more active and concrete images, and made his symbols more truly poetic. This Barnes & Noble Classics edition is based on the 1909 New York Edition and incorporates a small number of additional editorial changes made by subsequent scholars.

In demonstrating the force of her character by showing how she affects the others, James dramatizes her the more, just as he does with the figure of Mrs. Newsome in The Ambassadors (who never actually appears in the novel). Milly舗s presence is powerfully felt even in her absence. She animates the other characters; they are at first preoccupied with trying to figure her out and then they scheme to use her for their own purposes. Her seeming victimhood is demonstrated by the way the others constantly plot behind her back.

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