The Return of Martin Guerre

In: English and Literature

Submitted By xavqure
Words 1249
Pages 5
The story, The Return of Martin Guerre was published by Natalie Zemon Davis as she was going through a rough point in her life due to the communism over take in society at this point. She was forced into house arrest because of her husband, however she eventually made the best of it by writing this novel. The Return of Martin Guerre is based on an actual historical case during 16th century France. The story of Martin Guerre was based upon a man named Martin Guerre who was fed up with family life and left his wife and two kids. After some time a man claims to be Martin Guerre, but is actually an imposter, named Arnaud. The rest of the story is about how Arnaud is taken to court by Pierre and other village people claiming he is an imposter, but at the same time how Martin’s wife, Bertrande doesn’t know that Arnaud is her husband. In conclusion the real Martin comes into the court case and then everyone knew it was the real Martin because of the peg leg he was supposed to have while he was away.

This novel has gotten great admiration for the excellent writing with the historical evidence that is presented in the novel. Though Davis’s book was widely accepted some disagreed such as one historian by the name of, Robert Finlay. Once he read the novel he writes an article opposing it, entitled, “The Refashioning of Martin Guerre” he describes it as a romantic novel, that is full of drama, he says that it is more of a film than an actual novel because of its different view and lack of evidence. Davis makes a comeback to Finlay’s article, and writes her own article titled “On the Lame.” In her article she comes back at Finlay at how he didn’t read clearly enough to see her evidence presented, “I decided to use a literary construction for The Return of Martin Guerre that would allow the book to be read, if one wished, like a detective story.”(575) In the article Davis…...

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