Verniana — Jules Verne Studies / Etudes Jules Verne — Volume 8 (2015–2016) — 57–70

With Verne in Icaria: Two Sources for Robur-le-conquérant

Alex Kirstukas


The character Robur in Jules Verne’s Robur-le-conquérant has provoked a wide array of seemingly incompatible interpretations, ranging from unconvincing boor to noble hero. It is, however, possible to reconcile these varied interpretations if the character is viewed in the context of two sources for the novel: the Heavier-Than-Air Society associated with the photographer Nadar, and the Icarian movement conceived by the philosopher Étienne Cabet. This paper studies the extent of these two sources’ influences, with assistance from Verne’s manuscript and his correspondence with Pierre-Jules Hetzel.

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