|Hugo's life spanned much of the 19th century: He was born in 1802 and died in 1885. He was educated in Paris, and had one wife, one mistress, and five children, including Ad?le, whose madness was immortalized in the Truffaut film "The Story of Ad?le H.". Hugo was deeply involved in politics; he was exiled from France in 1851 for his activities, and lived thereafter on the islands of Jersey and Guernsey. His vast oeuvre contains much greatness but also, perhaps because of its staggering volume, much that is mediocre and self-indulgent, and too immersed in Hugo's idea that life is a conflict between the light and the dark, with few shades of gray. A larger-than-life figure and in some ways a mad genius, Hugo was also a skillful artist. He wrote novels, plays, poems, and essays on virtually every issue, self-confidently commenting on literature, politics, social themes, and religion.