Joy H.'s Reviews > The Bonfire of the Vanities

The Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe
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's review
Jan 02, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: read-a-while-ago, watched-film-too, adapted-to-film

Added 1/2/11.
While reviewing my GR shelves, I realized that I had read this book quite a while ago, but failed to include in my GR list of books read. I remember enjoying the book. I also remember that, as usual, the movie didn't come up to the book, for me.

January 29, 2012:
As to the meaning of the book title "Bonfire of the Vanities",
GR member, Margaret [ ] sent me a message which said the following about the title:
"... it comes from the fanatical religious practice, especially in Renaissance Italy, of creating huge public bonfires out of things that were thought to lead Man into Sin - a pretty broad definition that included everything from hand mirrors to books to paintings.

"The biggest and most famous one was staged by the wild-eyed monk Savonarola in 15th century Florence.

"I think Wolfe is drawing a parallel with the shallow, materialistic, pleasure-seeking zeitgeist of wealthy New Yorkers in the 1980s, and putting them in a situation where all that metaphorically goes up in flames.

"Here's a Wikipedia link that's got lots more..."
Thank you, Margaret!
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05/11/2016 marked as: read

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