The Belly of Paris (also known as: The Fat and The Thin)
by Émile Zola
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The Belly of Paris (Le Ventre de Paris) is the third novel in Émile Zola's twenty-volume series Les Rougon-Macquart, first published in 1873. It is a novel of the teeming life which surrounds the great central markets of Paris. The book was originally translated into English by Henry Vizetelly and published in 1888 under the title Fat and Thin. After Vizetelly's imprisonment for obscene libel the novel was one of those revised and expurgated by his son, Ernest Alfred Vizetelly. The heroine is Lisa Quenu, a daughter of Antoine Macquart. She has become prosperous, and with prosperity her selfishness has increased. Her brother-in-law Florent had escaped from penal servitude in Cayenne and lived for a short time in her house, but she became tired of his presence and ultimately denounced him to the police.Émile Zola (1840 – 1902) was a French writer, the most important exemplar of the literary school of naturalism and an important contributor to the development of theatrical naturalism. He was a major figure in the political liberalization of France.