A Critic's Meta Review: 4/5
A Critic's Meta Review: 4/5
Around the World in Eighty Days was written during difficult times for both Verne and the country of France. However, the technological innovations of the 19th century had opened the possibility of rapid circumnavigation; a prospect that fascinated Verne and his readership. This new horizon sparked Verne’s imagination as he explored the idea that anyone could sit down, draw up a schedule, buy tickets and travel around the world, a feat previously reserved for only the most heroic and hardy of adventurers.
While Verne is often characterized as a futurist or science-fiction author, Around the World in Eighty Days is a break from his typical style as the novel has no hint of either genre. Up until 2006, no critical editions were written due to poor translations and the stereotypical connection between science fiction and "worthless" boys' literature. However, as new translations appeared, Verne's works began receiving more serious reviews. As a result, Post-Colonial readings of the novel reveal Verne's role as propagandist for European global dominance. Verne's novel, one of the most widely read of the 19th century, played a major role in shaping European attitudes of colonized lands.
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Originally published in 1872, Around the World in Eighty Days is a popular adventure novel written by the French author Jules Verne. The novel follows the story of Phileas Fogg of London in his attempt to circumnavigate the world in 80 days on a budget of approximately $2.5 million dollars in today’s standards. The novel is known as one of Verne’s most acclaimed works.
The story begins in London on Wednesday, October 2nd, 1872. Living in solitude, Phileas Fogg is a rich British gentleman that has lived a modest life while carrying out his habits with mathematical precision. He is a member of the Reform Club, where he dedicates most of his day. After dismissing his former valet for bringing him shaving water that was two degrees too cold, Fogg hired Frenchman Jean Passepartout as a replacement.
After getting into an argument at the Reform Club, Fogg accepts a wager for half of his total fortune to prove that it’s possible to travel around the world in 80 days. Fogg and Passepartout embark on the journey with the remaining half of his fortune to cover their expenses.
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