Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Candide and Other Stories (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – May 15, 2008
|New from||Used from|
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Telling the tale of the good-natured but star-crossed Candide (think Mr. Magoo armed with deadly force), as he travels the world struggling to be reunited with his love, Lady Cunegonde, the novel smashes such ill-conceived optimism to splinters. Candide's tutor, Dr. Pangloss, is steadfast in his philosophical good cheer, in the face of more and more fantastic misfortune; Candide's other companions always supply good sense in the nick of time. Still, as he demolishes optimism, Voltaire pays tribute to human resilience, and in doing so gives the book a pleasant indomitability common to farce. Says one character, a princess turned one-buttocked hag by unkind Fate: "I have wanted to kill myself a hundred times, but somehow I am still in love with life. This ridiculous weakness is perhaps one of our most melancholy propensities; for is there anything more stupid than to be eager to go on carrying a burden which one would gladly throw away, to loathe one's very being and yet to hold it fast, to fondle the snake that devours us until it has eaten our hearts away?"--Michael Gerber --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Wootton's edition is clearly the best on the market--the supporting material is brilliantly chosen and lavishly presented given the cost of the book. --Michael Kulikowski, Smith College
Along with a brisk and very readable rendition of the text, this edition provides the material necessary for understanding the point of Voltaire's satire. Wootton's Introduction gives an excellent account of the dispute over optimism, and the supplementary texts show both the opposing points of view in this dispute, and its development on other texts of Voltaire. --Christopher J. Kelly, co-editor, The Collected Writings of Rousseau
I annually assign Voltaire's Candide in my Western Civilization since 1500 course. This semester I am using the Hackett edition, having used at least three other editions in the past. What I especially find useful in your edition are the Related Texts. I think they are essential for understanding what Voltaire was addressing. The translation is lively, the notes quite useful, and Wotton's introduction thorough. I don't recall another edition that includes a map. All of these features in an inexpensive paperback--the other editions I've used can’t match it. --Steven Werner, University of Wisconsin-Waukesha
Top Customer Reviews
Before reading further, let me share a word of caution. This book is filled with human atrocities of the most gruesome sort. Anything that you can imagine could occur in war, an Inquisition, or during piracy happens in this book. If you find such matters distressing (as many will, and more should), this book will be unpleasant reading. You should find another book to read.
The book begins as Candide is raised in the household of a minor noble family in Westphalia, where he is educated by Dr. Pangloss, a student of metaphysical questions. Pangloss believes that this is the best of all possible worlds and deeply ingrains that view into his pupil. Candide is buoyed by that thought as he encounters many setbacks in the course of the book as he travels through many parts of Europe, Turkey, and South America.
All is well for Candide until he falls in love with the Baron's daughter and is caught kissing her hand by the Baron. The Baron immediately kicks Candide out of the castle (literally on the backside), and Candide's wanderings begin. Think of this as being like expulsion from the Garden of Eden for Adam.Read more ›
At a mere 144 pages (in this edition), this is a classic that is a breeze to read. As to the charge that this book is too "violent" or "in bad taste", I would only ask you to remember that Voltaire was furious that learned members of a "civilized" society (like Leibniz, Pope, and even Rousseau)could claim that the apparent senseless violence and mayhem wrought by disasters, war, disease, man's cruelty, etc. was actually only a part of some 'greater good' - after all, God (being perfect) could not 'logically' created anything but the 'best of all possible' universes.
Voltaire's touch is so light and understated that I defy anyone to write anything that contains a third of the violence in 'Candide' and still manages to read as breezily and somehow be genuinely funny.
But dark satire must be funny - otherwise it lapses into pedantry.
Read it - even if you do not like it, I guarantee you that it will disturb you and make you think.
And for that, we can thank Voltaire.
Enter now the Norton Critical Edition of Candide. This book presents the 75 page story along with 130 additional pages of various articles and essays on the times in which it was written; commentary by Voltaire and by his contemporaries; and critiques of the story by modern writers. Sure there are always a few dull, academic essays making their mandatory appearance in a book like this, but my suggestion is just to skip them. After all there are a lot of them to choose from.
Learn the story behind the story so to speak. After all it is the background of Candide that makes Candide the forceful satire that it is.
Like a lot of people I had read "Candide" years ago for school and was impressed with the work. However, I soon forgot about it and never really thought about Voltaire's other works. As I was browsing Amazon one day I saw this book and thought it was time to revisit this old friend. Boy was I lucky.
Three of the "other stories" are every bit as good as "Candide". "Micromegas" is a fine SciFi work from the 1740's. It comes complete with a Saturnian and Syrian and relates their struggle to understand the Earth's philosophies. "Zadig" unfolds in a similar manner to "Candide" but may be even more biting. Finally "The Ingenu" holds special interest for Americans as it chronicles the problems encountered by a young Huron "Savage" as he relocates to "Civilized" France. The final story "The White Bull" is not in the same class as the rest of the works in this book, but still is a fun read.
It was nice to see my old friend "Candide", but even nicer to meet the new friends that are here. If you are considering buying one of the other copies which have only "Candide" the extra works here make this version so much richer.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Candide is an all-time favorite of mine. I bought this book because I try to keep a copy of it in my library at all times. Read morePublished 13 days ago by Know One
If you haven't read Voltaire's Candide, you really owe it to yourself. I first read Candide many years ago and now, as an old man, I find it to be a deeper, more-satisfying, book... Read morePublished 20 days ago by IAK
I first read this book as an undergraduate. Its pragmatic, anti-romantic conclusion--that the best way to approach life is to live simply in the present and "cultivate your... Read morePublished 28 days ago by Aquinas
The main reason I read this was to observe Voltaire's alleged Magnum opus. I enjoyed it. One must keep in mind that this is a satire of a very different time and appreciate it as... Read morePublished 28 days ago by DMM
It’s virtually impossible to say anything about Voltaire’s inimitable parody (of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz’s THÉODICÉE) without having an intimate knowledge of the... Read morePublished 1 month ago by R. Russell Bittner
Classic novel, still relates to the issues with religion that we are having today.Published 2 months ago by Gino Baiocchi