Jules Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly  

From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search
Jules Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly (portrait by Émile Lévy, ca. 1882)
Enlarge
Jules Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly (portrait by Émile Lévy, ca. 1882)

Related e

Google
Wikipedia
Wiktionary
Wiki Commons
Wikisource
YouTube
Shop


Featured:
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Enlarge
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Jules-Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly (2 November 1808 – 23 April 1889), was a French novelist and short story writer. He specialised in a kind of mysterious tale that examines hidden motivation and hinted evil bordering (but never crossing into) the supernatural. He had a decisive influence on writers such as Auguste Villiers de l'Isle-Adam, Henry James and Proust. His best-known collection is The She-Devils, which includes the cult classic Happiness in Crime and is still in print from Dedalus Books. Une vieille maîtresse (An Elderly Mistress, 1851) was adapted to cinema by French director Catherine Breillat: its English title is The Last Mistress.

He is variously lumped in with the Late French Romantics, The Decadents, Symbolists and is included in the Genealogy of the Cruel Tale and The Romantic Agony. He is considered a practitioner of the Fantastique and a dandy.

Contents

Praise and criticism

Paul Bourget describes him as a dreamer with an exquisite sense of vision, who sought and found in his work a refuge from the uncongenial world of the every day. Jules Lemaître, a less sympathetic critic, finds in the extraordinary crimes of his heroes and heroines, in his reactionary views, his dandyism and snobbery, an exaggerated Byronism.

Beloved of fin-de-siècle decadents, Barbey d'Aurevilly is a classic example of the manner of which the Romanticists were capable and to read him is to understand the discredit that fell upon that manner among the later Victorians. He held extreme Catholic views, yet wrote on the most risqué subjects (an apparent conflict more troubling to the English than to the French; Voltairiennisme would have been something else) he gave himself aristocratic airs and hinted at a mysterious past, though his parentage was entirely respectable and his youth humdrum and innocent.

Fantastique

Symbolists

Other fiction that is sometimes considered Symbolist is the cynical misanthropic (and especially, misogynistic) tales of Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly.

Biography

He was born at Saint-Sauveur-le-Vicomte (Manche) in Normandy. In the 1850s, Barbey d'Aurevilly became literary critic of Le Pays.

Inspired by the character and ambience of Valognes, he set his works against the social pattern of the aristocracy of Normandy. Although he himself did not write in Norman, he encouraged the revival of vernacular literature in his home region.

Jules-Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly died in Paris and was interred in the Cimetière du Montparnasse. In 1926 his remains were transferred to Saint-Sauveur-le-Vicomte's cemetery.

Selected works

His complete works are published in two volumes of the Bibliothèque de la Pléiade.

Works

  • Une vieille maîtresse (An Elderly Mistress, 1851), attacked at the time of its publication on the charge of immorality; it was adapted to cinéma by the controversial director Catherine Breillat: its English title is The Last Mistress.
  • L'Ensorcelée (The Bewitched, 1854), an episode of the royalist rising among the Norman peasants against the first republic.
  • Chevalier Destouches 1864
  • Les Diaboliques (The She-Devils) 1874, a collection of short stories, each of which relates a tale of a woman who commits an act of violence, a crime, or revenge.
  • Le Cachet d’Onyx 1831
  • Léa 1832
  • L’Amour impossible 1841
  • La Bague d’Annibal 1842
  • Un Prêtre marié 1864
  • Une Histoire sans nom 1882
  • Ce qui ne meurt pas 1883
  • Du Dandysme et de Georges Brummel 1845
  • Les Prophètes du passé 1851
  • Les Oeuvres et les hommes 1860-1909
  • Les quarante médaillons de l'Académie 1864
  • Les ridicules du temps 1883
  • Pensées détachées, Fragments sur les femmes 1889
  • Polémiques d'hier 1889
  • Dernières Polémiques 1891
  • Goethe et Diderot 1913

His complete works are published in two volumes of the Bibliothèque de la Pléiade.

Happiness in Crime

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Jules Amédée Barbey d'Aurevilly" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

Personal tools