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Gustave Flaubert has been called the master of ‘‘Art for Art's Sake.’’ Research the literary school of realism and the idea of ‘‘art for art's sake’’ and discuss ‘‘A Simple Heart’’ in those terms. You might choose to draw parallels to realism in the visual arts and sciences.

Flaubert, it is said, was attempting to write realistically, to report what he saw, and to write with the beautiful precision of the language of science. Discuss how a writer of literature can be said to resemble, in style, tone, rhythm, or diction, a composer of music or of a work of science.

Read Madame Bovary and discuss the various parallels between that novel and ‘‘A Simple Heart.’’ In particular, examine the similarities and differences in the worldviews expressed in the two works.

"A Simple Heart’’ was originally entitled Le Perroquet (The Parrot). Discuss how each title suggests a different approach or meaning to the story.

Compare Félicité to the character Forrest Gump in the movie of the same name. Discuss some of the similarities and differences between the two works in terms of the points they make and how they make them.

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