The Elixir of Life
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The short story is about eternal life. However, this is an eternal life story with a horrific twist.
Balzac makes another social critique, pointing out how the failing society in the ethics from this tale's time views some types of people: "Truly tender, delicate, fair, generous, prudent and brave did not deserve the least regard among men."
In other words, behind the beautiful curtain of fantasy and the satanic, there is a tale that defies the moral and common standards of the institutions that underpin that society.