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I remember from school that a certain book was treated during English literature classes about an English man who grew up in a mansion isolated from society? He was taken care of and everything without having to interact with other human beings. When he finally came out into society, there was a disconnect between his view of things and reality. Could anyone tell me the title and author of that book? It was set somewhere in the 20th century.

EDIT: It must have been about 25 years ago I read it. It was a British novel. I think we had a cheap paperback version and on the cover there was a picture of a man wearing fancy clothes, a grey bowlerhat and a walking stick, sitting on a chair. The idea of the novel was that the person was mentally stilted, because of his lack of social contact, very much set in his ways and routines and unable to understand other people or even acknowledge their autonomy.

  • When were you in school? Do you remember anything else about the novel? Was it translated? Was there anything on the cover? – Gallifreyan Jun 13 '17 at 8:03
  • That must have been about 18 years ago. It was a British novel. I think we had a cheap paperback version and on the cover there was a picture of a man wearing fancy clothes, a grey bowlerhat and a walking stick, sitting on a chair. The idea of the novel was that the person was mentally stilted, because of his lack of social contact, very much set in his ways and routines and unable to understand other people or even acknowledge their autonomy. – Fedor Steeman Jun 13 '17 at 13:16
  • You can edit your question to add this, and any other detail you remember ;) – Gallifreyan Jun 13 '17 at 17:13
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    "mentally stilted" definitely matches Being There (I've only seen the movie, which is excellent). See this image: does it match the book cover you're describing? – ShreevatsaR Jun 14 '17 at 5:20
  • Yes, it does indeed! – Fedor Steeman Dec 26 '17 at 20:34
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This plot reminded me of the movie "Being There" starring Peter Sellers. I looked it up and it turns out this film was adapted from a book of the same title published in 1970: Being There by Jerzy Kosinski.

Possibly the book you are after? Though he didn't really have "major troubles adjusting" after he left the mansion. Quite the opposite!

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    THAT IS IT! Thank you ! I may remember some of the plot points wrong. Now that you mention it, I vaguely remember that he was doing OK, but his view of things was rather schewed. – Fedor Steeman Jun 15 '17 at 14:57
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    I can't believe I never recognized Peter Sellers on the cover until now! – Fedor Steeman Jun 15 '17 at 15:00

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