Strait is the Gate
8 1/2 in. x 5 3/4 in.
André Gide was thoroughly familiar with the subject of Strait is the Gate - love between cousins - for in 1895 he had married his young cousin Madeleine. The difficulties of this marriage had a powerful influence on Gide's fiction, for Madeleine was puritanical in her Christianity, while Gide was devoted to the sensual. This conflict between his religious and "pagan" sides was one of the underlying themes of all of Gide's writing.
"Jerome Pallissier and Alissa Bucolin, cousins who have known and loved each other from infancy, find the unquestioning devotion of years ripening into a love whose mysterious force leaves them embarrassed in each other's presence, each doubtful of the other's love. For Jerome, marriage seems the natural fulfillment of this new relation, but Alissa, whose love for her cousin has in it an element of religious ecstasy, dares not risk in marriage the diminution of this love which is the whole of life to her. Torn between her longing for Jerome and her determination to sacrifice her happiness in leaving him free, she only succeeds in convincing him that she does not care for him as he cares for her. Physically unable to bear the pain of their separation, her life ebbs away. After her death, a diary which she has left reveals to Jerome a love which unites them at last beyond all possibility of separation." -Book Review Digest
"Strait is the Gate is deservedly the book which made André Gide famous: it is one of the great classics of French fiction since the death of Flaubert." -Ernest Boyd, New Republic
"No review of the book can quite give its flavor. Sincere, moving and haunting, it is the story of a spiritual martyrdom, self-inflicted and inescapable. A special word of thanks is due Dorothy Bussy for her smooth, careful, and sympathetic translation." -Grace Frank, Literary Review
"André Gide is one of the most important figures in French letters. By many he is even regarded as the greatest contemporary proseur, and Strait is the Gate is an extremely beautiful book." -J. W. Krutch, The Nation
"They are pages out of the great book of life and they illustrate both how infinitesimal and yet majestical the state of man is. A serious purpose underlies the work of Gide, and it is from such purposes that great novelists arise." -H. S. Gorman, N. Y. Times
Bentley Library-Bound Standard Fiction Reprints are printed on high-quality 55-lb. book paper. The bindings are sewn, not glued, and each book is covered with a sturdy water-resistant Pyroxylin library binding. This high-quality construction ensures that these books will last for many years.
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ISBN: 0-8376-0453-2 (ISBN-10)
ISBN: 978-0-8376-0453-4 (ISBN-13)