When a bumbling holy man mistakenly baptizes a colony of penguins, God endows the animals with souls and their formerly peaceful community declines into a maelstrom of violence and sin. This witty allegory lampoons French history from ancient to modern times, taking satirical swipes at socialists, royalists, industrialists, militarists, and even the Dreyfus affair, and concluding with a remarkably prescient view of the future. Indeed, more than a hundred years after its initial publication, the story's insights into politics and society remain enduringly relevant. Poet, novelist, and journalist Anatole France (1844–1924) received the Nobel Prize in 1921 in recognition of his literary achievements. His writings reflect an ironic and skeptical point of view, and many of his works were placed on the Roman Catholic Church's Index of Forbidden Books. This edition of Penguin Island is enhanced with the original black-and-white images by noted illustrator Frank C. Papé.