Author(s): Gabriel Chevallier
Gabriel Chevallier's delightful novel Clochemerle satirizes the titanic confrontation of secular and religious forces in a small wine-growing village in Beaujolais. The eruption begins when the socialist mayor decides that he wants to leave behind a monument to his administration's achievements. He takes as his model the ancient Romans, who were famous for two things - hygiene and noble edifices. Thus, he decides to unite the two concepts . . . by constructing a public urinal in the centre of town. There is one problem, however. The chosen locale is next to the village church, and this outrages the ecclesiastical party.