Madame Bovary

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Gustave Flaubert

Madame Bovary is a novel by Gustave Flaubert. It was published in 1856. It is the story of an unhappy middle class French housewife. She longs for the kind of romance and glamor that life in the country does not provide. After a few unfulfilling adulteries, she kills herself.

The story was first published in parts (serialization) in a magazine. It was thought obscene. Flaubert and his publisher were charged with immorality, but were acquitted.

The story was a great success when published in book form in 1857. It is thought one of the greatest novels ever written. It has been adapted to different media. An American movie starring Jennifer Jones is perhaps the best known adaptation to Americans.