Ogneva E.V. Realism as the Anatomy of Character: Eça de Queirós’s “Cousin Basilio”
The article is devoted to an aesthetic experiment that became a kind of a continuation of “Coimbrã Issue” (1865) and “Democratic Lectures in Lisbon Casino” (1871). In Eça de Queirós’s novel “Cousin Basilio” (1878) was vividly reflected the 70’s generation’s passion for the newest achievements of European thought and “Flaubert’s Lessons”. Theoretical argument on realism in literature gained an unexpected reflection in the novel. According to Eça de Queirós’s deep conviction, romantic literature, understood as the “apotheosis of feeling”, should be replaced by a merciless “anatomy of character”. He demonstratively “rewrites” “Madame Bovary”, the novel which is regarded as a cult one by his like-minded people, conducting his literary experiment on Portuguese ground and “anatomizing” both the national character and the “disease” of modern society.