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Adolphe (Oxford World's Classics)
ISBN 0192839276 / 9780192839275 / 0-19-283927-6
Publisher Oxford University Press, USA
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Adolphe enjoys all the advantages of a noble birth and an intellectual ability, yet he is haunted by the meaninglessness of life. Thus, he merely seeks distraction in the pursuit of the beautiful, but older and married Ellenore. The young Adolphe, inexperienced in the language of love, falls for her unexpectedly and falters under the burden of an illicit love that is destructive to his public career. Unable to commit himself fully to Ellenore, and yet unwilling to face the pain he would cause by leaving her, Adolphe finds himself incapable of resolving an increasingly tragic situation.
Written in a clear and thoughtful style, Adolphe (1816) reveals Constant's own experiences in love, while reflecting his anxieties for the possibility of any authentic commitment to someone other than ourselves, whether emotional or political, in a disenchanted world. [via]