Sale, Giorgio (2006) L’Esthetique de la nouvelle historique: le cas exemplaire de Dom Carlos. Amsterdam International Electronic Journal for Cultural Narratology (3). Article.
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Since the date of its publication (1672), Dom Carlos the historical tale of Saint-Real, became accepted in France like a definite generic model of its kind. It constituted an important stage in the proceedings of aesthetic renewal of the classical genre of novel. The text shows a historical subject described by the narrator operating within the strict domains of a concrete reality. The characters, (a small number of them), are by no means fictive or imaginary. In comparison with novels of the first half of XVII century, the action induces some sort of a sensitive concentration. The story generally follows the chronology of a concrete historical development, whereas a distinct changes in a classical ‘embellished aesthetics’ of the narrative work seek some hidden pedagogical aim. This aim is described and explained at the end of the story, via condemnation of vices and by a vivid triumph of virtue. The relation of this process towards the implicit reader involves a linear construction of the entire story. These long retrospective-tales are in general very typical for the novels of the previous periods but will be abandoned in future.
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