Victor Hugo on Things That Matter gives English speakers the social, historical, cultural, and biographical context that is essential for enjoying the writing and art of this genius of nineteenth-century France. The book’s topical organization lets readers investigate Hugo’s ideas about private and personal concernslove, children, grief, nature, Godas well as public and politically important issuesliberty and democracy, tyranny, social justice, humanity, peace, and war. Unlike other Hugo anthologies, Victor Hugo on Things That Matter offers introductions and notes in English and includes twenty-five of Hugo’s watercolors and drawings. Readers will find key Hugo texts in the original French, along with the following supplemental information in English:· an overview of Hugo’s importance and his private and public personas;· introductions to each chapter;· historical and cultural explanatory notes;· a time line of Hugo’s life and work;· suggestions for further reading.
Marva Barnett is professor at the University of Virginia, where she also serves as director of the Teaching Resource Center.