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The Drinking Den

Émile Zola - Author

Robin Buss - Translator

Robin Buss - Introduction by

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ISBN 9780140449549 | 480 pages | 03 Aug 2004 | Penguin Classics | 5.07 x 7.79in | 18 - AND UP
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Set in the taverns of Paris, this is perhaps the first classical tragedy of working-class people living in the slums of a city. The Drinking Den (1877) is part of the Rougon-Macquart series, a naturalistic history of two branches of a family tracedthrough several generations. Zola's work was influenced by contemporary theories of heredity and experimental science, and the behaviour of the two families is shown to be conditioned by environment and inherited characteristics, chiefly drunkenness and mental instability.