Monday, March 12, 2012

Writing Spaces: Ahead of His Time

First of all, what is with the weather? 70 degrees and sunny in Chicago? Is it June?! This is a city that, last May, my flight back to New York was cancelled because of several inches of snow and freezing rain. MAKE UP YOUR MIND, CHICAGO!

Okay, rant over.

Today's Writing Space comes via special request from the husband. My love for my standing desk being well-documented, he suggested that I do a writing space for Victor Hugo, the original standing-desk enthusiast. So here it is!

Hugo wrote all his novels standing up at his desk, which makes tomes like Les Miserables and The Hunchback of Notre Dame even more impressive.

Photo via
I've never read Les Mis, but the husband has made it through at least twice. Which is pretty surprising, considering his "pleasure reading" is dense academic articles (although maybe not that surprising considering Hugo's writing...).

Here's one of the husband's favorite parts in the book, when the bishop forgives Valjean and Valjean must accept what it means to be forgiven:

He set himself stubbornly in opposition to the angelic deeds and the gentle words of the old man, "you have promised me to become an honest man. I am purchasing your soul, I withdraw it from the spirit of perversity and I give it to God Almighty." This came back to him incessantly. To this celestial tenderness, he opposed pride, which is the fortress of evil in man. He felt dimly that the pardon of the priest was the hardest assault, and the most formidable attack which he had yet sustained; that the hardness of heart would be complete, if it resisted this kindness; that if he yielded, he must renounce that hatred with which he found satisfaction; that, this time, he must conquer or be conquered, and that the struggle, a gigantic and decisive struggle, had begun between his own wickedness, and the goodness of man. - Les Miserables, 1862

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