Critics’ Reviews

“This superb edition of Bug-Jargal, which includes a wealth of contextualizing documentation, makes Hugo’s early representations of race and revolution fully accessible to a contemporary English-language audience. Bongie’s critical introduction, translations of both the 1826 novel and the original 1820 short story, and incorporation of contemporary reviews, literary sources, and historical materials reinvigorate Hugo’s work and enable the reader to engage with it from a fresh, postcolonial perspective.” — Kathryn M. Grossman, Pennsylvania State University

“Victor Hugo’s early novel of the Haitian Revolution has taken on a new significance in our postcolonial age preoccupied with race, subaltern resistance, and hybridity. Chris Bongie provides a richly contextualized version that will appeal to historians, literary scholars, and general readers alike. It combines meticulous documentation and a provocative argument about the conservative young poet’s ambivalent rendering of this ‘struggle of giants,’ which was written at a turning point in his political development.” — David Geggus, University of Florida

“Chris Bongie gives a highly readable and accurate translation of the novel, its 1820 short-story version, and of the supporting documents. He also devotes much of the introduction and notes to demonstrating how Hugo had pieced together portions of the novel from historical sources. [The translation and choice of documents] indicate the Broadview edition’s scholarly and pedagogical uses.” — Nineteenth-Century French Studies

Posted on November 2, 2015