'Madame Bovary' materials published

April 18, 2009 at 4:40 PM
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PARIS, April 18 (UPI) -- Thousands of pages of the 19th-century French novel "Madame Bovary" that were cut by author Gustave Flaubert or censored have been posted online.

The Independent reported Saturday that 4,500 pages of Flaubert's work were released, not just the some-500 pages in the published version.

The British newspaper reported that 130 volunteers in dozens of countries worked to transcribe the material.

"They range from sixth-formers to a cleaning lady and an oil prospector," said Professor Danielle Girard, who coordinated the transcription work.

The novel and the manuscripts can be seen on the Web site www.bovary.fr.

"No one person in a single lifetime could have achieved what they have," said project leader Yvan Leclerc, a professor at the University of Rouen. "It can take between three and 10 hours to decipher a single page of Flaubert's writing."

The newspaper reported that when "Madame Bovary" appeared in 1857 in serial form, Flaubert and his publishers were prosecuted for "outraging public and religious morals." Flaubert won the case.

The novel tells the story of love affairs and the suicide of the wife of an incompetent provincial doctor in Normandy.

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