By Ms. Mary Ann Caws
No longer because the book of Paul Auster’s The Random apartment ebook of twentieth Century French Poetry (1984) has there been an important and commonly learn anthology of contemporary French poetry within the English-speaking international. right here for the 1st time is a accomplished bilingual illustration of French poetic success within the 20th century, from the turn-of-the-century poetry of Guillaume Apollinaire to the excessive modernist artwork of Samuel Beckett to the modern verse of scourge Michel Houellebecq. the various English translations (on dealing with pages) are justly celebrated, composed via eminent figures akin to T.S. Eliot, Wallace Stevens, and John Ashbery; many others are new and feature been commissioned for this book.Distinguished student and editor Mary Ann Caws has selected paintings by way of greater than a hundred poets. Her intentionally wide, overseas choice comprises paintings by means of Francophone poets, through writers greater recognized for accomplishments in different genres (novelists, songwriters, functionality artists), and by way of many extra lady poets than have quite often been represented in earlier anthologies of contemporary French poetry. The editor has opted for a chronological association that highlights six the most important “pressure issues” in glossy French poetry. Accompanying the decisions are a basic advent, informative essays on every one interval, and brief biographical notes—all ready via the editor.
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Additional info for The Yale Anthology of Twentieth-Century French Poetry
110. 22. Ibid. 23. For a fascinating account of the involvement of French poets and anthropologists—Leiris in particular—and the primitive pull, see James Cli√ord, ‘‘Negrophilia,’’ in Hollier, French Literature, pp. 901–8. , with Miriam Deutch, Primitivism and Twentieth-Century Art: A Documentary History (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003). 24. In the ‘‘First Manifesto of Surrealism,’’ Breton deﬁnes the term this way; ‘‘SURRÉALISME: Automatisme psychique pur par lequel on se propose d’exprimer, soit verbalement, soit par écrit, soit de toute autre manière, le fonctionnement réel de la pensée.
Robert Desnos, perhaps the greatest Surrealist poet, was to die in the Terezin concentration camp, choosing not to testify against other Resistance ﬁgures. Just before his death, he turned to a more traditional form of poetry, writing in what could be considered classic verse. Benjamin Péret, Breton’s most ardent and faithful disciple, wrote excitedly about automata in his enthusiastic and temperamental way and viliﬁed the political engagement of Aragon and Éluard, believing—as did Breton—that poetry was its own honor and should not fall into any shade of political trap or praise.
Walk poems, perhaps above all others, are modiﬁed by what the speaker carries or picks up along the way. Roger Fry, the British art critic and painter, never traveled without a small volume of Mallarmé’s poems in his pocket. Kenneth Rexroth and Frank O’Hara carried small volumes of Reverdy’s poems, and William Carlos Williams, one of René Char’s. We remember Williams’ credo associated with that poet of brooding intensity and passion: René Char you are a poet who believes in the power of beauty to right all wrongs.