[ModLib] A couple of questions about Mademoiselle de Maupin

Jerry Karp jerry at rocketwords.com
Mon Jul 23 00:16:03 EDT 2012

Thanks for all that information, Gordon, but it doesn't answer my
questions, I'm afraid.

I am wondering which Vizetelly it is, the father or the son (see my
original email) and whether there's any way of identifying the exact
publication edition of an ML volume published before the cataloge list
was included at that back of the book, if one does not have a dust

Thanks again,

On Sun, Jul 22, 2012 at 8:08 PM, Gordon Barrick Neavill
<neavill at wayne.edu> wrote:
> The ML used the anonymous translation published by Vizetelly in London in 1887. This translation omitted three paragraphs of chap. 16. The omission, indicated by three lines of asterisks, follows the sentence: "He took up the fair one in his arms and bore her to the couch” (p. 289). When a reader complained that the translation was not "complete and unabridged" as indicated on the jacket, Klopfer responded:
> "The passage omitted is one that no American publisher can print without running the risk of being sent to jail for publishing obscene literature. It is simply a paragraph or two giving in detail an amorous encounter, and its deletion affects in no way the continuity of the story. We printed all of this passage that we dared to. I know of no edition of the book in the English language that leaves out less of this particular episode."
> Following the 1933 court decision that lifted the ban on Joyce’s Ulysses, Cerf and Klopfer commissioned a translation of the expurgated paragraphs of Mademoiselle de Maupin. The added text is included in printings from 1935 on, which also include "One of Cleopatra's Nights."
> The newly translated text appears on pp. 289-90:
> "In an instant he undressed and flung himself beside her.
> The girl pressed herself against him and embraced him closely, for her two breasts were as cold and as white as snow. This purity of skin aroused D’Albert and excited him to the highest pitch. Soon she too became inflamed. He began to caress her most ardently and madly – chest, shoulders, neck, mouth, arms, legs. He longed to cover with a single kiss her entire beautiful body, which was melting into his, so close was their embrace. In this wealth of charming treasures, he did not know which to attain first.
> All their kisses became one, and Rosalind’s perfumed lips were joined to D’Albert’s to make a single mouth. Their chests were expanded, their eyes half closed; their arms, exhausted by passion, no longer had the strength to press their bodies to each other. The divine moment approached. A supreme spasm convulsed the two lovers, and the curious Rosalind became as enlightened as possible on a matter which had so deeply perplexed her.
> Still, one lesson, no matter how intelligent one may be, cannot suffice; D’Albert gave her a second, then a third. Out of consideration for the reader, whom we do not wish to humiliate and discourage, we shall not carry this description too far."
> The unexpurgated text remained in print until 1957, when the ML edition of Mademoiselle de Maupin was discontinued.
> Barry
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Jerry Karp" <jerry at rocketwords.com>
> To: modlib at thuban.owu.edu
> Sent: Sunday, July 22, 2012 7:01:57 PM
> Subject: [ModLib] A couple of questions about Mademoiselle de Maupin
> Greetings all!
> I own a used bookstore in Ukiah, Mendocino County, northern
> California. At home I have a modest Modern Library collection but I
> have not had the opportunity to become as knowledgeable about them as
> so many folks on this listserve. At any rate, someone recently
> presented me with a couple of large boxes of old books for my store
> which to my delight included about two dozen old ML volumes (no dust
> jackets, alas). These got diverted from the store to my private
> collection. I've finally started to go through them a few at a time.
> One of the nicest is a copy of Mademoiselle de Maupin in a Style 4
> binding. While adding the book to my LibraryThing library, I became
> curious about the translation. The modernlib.com website includes the
> information that ML used "the 1887 Vizetelly translation." Looking up
> Vizetelly to find out his first name, I found on Wikipedia that this
> could possibly be the father, Henry Vizetelly, who was known (and
> prosecuted!) for his translations of Zola, or his son, Ernest Alfred
> Vizetelly, who retranslated some of his father's work. The 1887 date
> makes either plausible.
> On the one hand, Wikipedia says the son "reworked some of his father's
> Zola translations and published these bowdlerized versions in the
> 1890s," and the early ML versions of MdM are indeed bowdlerized.
> On the other hand, "the 1890s" are, obviously, later than 1887.
> Anybody know which it is?
> Also, am I correct in assuming that it's impossible to nail down the
> exact edition of this book, since I have no dust jacket and this
> edition has no titles list at the end?
> Many thanks!
> Jerry
> --
> Jerry Karp,
> Village Books
> 344 North State Street
> Ukiah, CA 95482
> (707) 468-5355
> jerry at rocketwords.com
> www.villagebooks-ukiah.com
> Facebook: Village Books - Ukiah
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> --
> Gordon B. Neavill
> Associate Professor
> School of Library and Information Science
> Wayne State University
> 106 Kresge Library
> Detroit, MI 48202
> 313-577-0507; 313-577-7563 (fax)
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Jerry Karp,
Village Books
344 North State Street
Ukiah, CA 95482
(707) 468-5355
jerry at rocketwords.com
Facebook: Village Books - Ukiah

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