Format: Trade Paperback
Dimensions: 144 pages, 3.05 × 2.02 × 0.15 in
Published: January 1, 1947
Publisher: Penguin UK (PB)
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0140440046
ISBN - 13: 9780140440041
From the Publisher
"Candide" is the story of a gentle man who, though pummeled and slapped in every direction by fate, clings desperately to the belief that he lives in "the best of all possible worlds." On the surface a witty, bantering tale, this eighteenth-century classic is actually a savage, satiric thrust at the philosophical optimism that proclaims that all disaster and human suffering is part of a benevolent cosmic plan. Fast, funny, often outrageous, the French philosopher''s immortal narrative takes Candide around the world to discover that -- contrary to the teachings of his distringuished tutor Dr. Pangloss -- all is not always for the best. Alive with wit, brilliance, and graceful storytelling, "Candide" has become Voltaire''s most celebrated work.
About the Author
A leading freethinker of his time and an opponent of political and religious oppression, Voltaire was instrumental in popularizing serious philosophical, religious, and scientific ideas that were frequently derived from liberal thinkers in England, where he lived for two years after his imprisonment in the Bastille. Voltaire's writings are wide ranging: He wrote plays in the neoclassic style, such as Oedipus (1718), philosophical essays in a popular vein like Letters on England (1734), which has been referred to as the first bomb hurled against the Ancien Regime; and the Philosophical Dictionary (1764), a catalog of polemical ideas on a large variety of subjects, particularly religion and philosophy. Voltaire was one of the most prolific letter writers in the entire history of literature, and his correspondence has been published in a French edition of 107 volumes. For the twentieth-century reader, Voltaire is best known for his philosophical tale Candide (1759), a masterpiece of satire that is both an attack on the philosophy of metaphysical optimism elaborated earlier in the century by the German philosopher Leibniz and a compendium of the abuses of the Ancien Regime as the author ponders the general problem of evil. Voltaire's unflinching belief in human reason and his easy handling of the language of Enlightenment wit and philosophy led the critic Roland Barthes to dub him "the last happy writer."
From Our Editors
Few satirists in history can compare with
Voltaire, whose acerbic intelligence and keen wits
earned him more than one stay in France's infamous Bastille prison.
Candide is his crowning achievement: a
ruthless skewering of the empty platitudes preached by the 18th
century theologians. As Voltaire's heroes are
subjected to every manner of disaster and torture, they are
consoled by the fatuous optimism of Pangloss, a self-proclaimed
"metaphysico-theologo-cosmolo-nigologist" - in a wicked broadside
that has delighted readers for more than two centuries.