In this novel Émile Zola makes an effective portrait of the rich Parisian bourgeoisie of the late nineteenth century. Nanà, the protagonist of the story, is the girl of all, who comes from below, and seeks in every way “respect” in Parisian society. After escaping the economic disaster of his parents, she received a huge success at the theatre, even though she could neither sing nor act. But he will soon stop acting to devote himself to the systematic squandering of the wealth of all his lovers. He is incapable of loving, even his little son Luigino, who however dies of smallpox at only three years old, and hates and despises all his lovers. It causes suicides, divisions, arrests and seems to rot”; everything it touches. Eventually, she will rot, disfigured by smallpox, and die in a hotel room while the Parisian chauvinism explodes outside for the declared war on Prussia.