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"People do tell a writer things that they don't tell others. I don't know why, unless it is that having read one or two of his books they feel on peculiarly intimate terms with him; or it may be that they dramatize themselves and, seeing themselves as it were as characters in a novel, are ready to be as open with him as they imagine the characters of his invention are."
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Honore de Balzac (1799-1850) was a nineteenth-century French novelist and playwright. His Magnum Opus was a sequence of almost 100 novels and plays collectively entitled La Comédie Humaine, which presents a panorama of French life in the years after the fall of Napoléon Bonaparte in 1815. Due to his keen observation of detail and unfiltered representation of society, Balzac is regarded as one of the founders of realism in European literature. He is renowned for his multi-faceted characters; even his lesser characters are complex, morally ambiguous and fully human. Inanimate objects are imbued with character as well; the city of Paris, a backdrop for much of his writing, takes on many human qualities. His writing influenced many famous authors, including the novelists Marcel Proust, Émile Zola, Charles Dickens, Gustave Flaubert, Marie Corelli, Henry James and Jack Kerouac, as well as important philosophers such as Friedrich Engels. Many of Balzac's works have been made into films, and they continue to inspire other writers. His works also include: Jean-Louis (1822), Clotilde de Lusignan (1822) and Wann-Chlore (1826).
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