Character and Revolution: Robespierre, Danton and the others

Emanuela Piga


This study aims to enquire the account of the French Revolution through the form of the novel and the building of characters, both invented or historically existed and reconstructed through the lens of the fiction. Starting from Victor Hugo’s nineteen century novel Quatre-vingt-treize (1874), the goal is to intertwine the analysis of the historiographical perspective inherent to the storytelling with the construction of different characters, core instrument of the ”melodramatic imagination” (P. Brooks). In this direction, the goal is also to reflect on the figuralization of moral conflicts which characterize the age of French Revolution and of the Jacobin ideology during the Terror.


Victor Hugo; Melodramatic Imagination; Historical novel; Character; French Revolution.

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