25 September 2016
(1910 – 1942)
professeur agrégé d'allemand,
écrivain. Résistant, intellectuel communiste,
fusillé comme hotage par les nazis, au Mont-Valérien
le 30 mai 1942.'
Jacques Decour was a French writer and member of the Resistance. He was responsible for two papers, L'université libre (1940) and La Pensée libre (1941), which was to be the most important publication in occupied France. He was arrested in March 1942 and executed by the Germans three and a half months later.
'Jean Marc ROBERTS
1954 – 2013
NÉE LE 15 JANVIER 1824
DÉCÉDÉ LE 3 FÉVRIER 1847.'
Marie Duplessis, or Alphonine Plessis, was the courtisane who died of tuberculosis at the age of twenty-three, and who inspired Alexandre Dumas fils to write La Dame aux camélias (1848), where she name is disguised as Maragurite Gautier.
1874 – 1953
This plaque was originally attached to the front of Tharaud's grave, although it is now loose at the back and virtually illegible.
Laure Junot, the duchess d’Abrantès, born Laure Adelaïde Constance Permon (1783–1838). After the death of her husband who killed himself in 1813, she began a literary career aided by the young Balzac, who became her lover in 1928. She is perhaps most noted for Mémoires historiques sur Napoléon Ier. Her success lasted a few years, but she died in poverty. The grave is by David d'Angers.
'Claude KLOTZ dit Patrick CAUVIN
1932 . 2010
Patrick Cauvin came from a working-class background in Marseille, where his father fostered his great love of the cinema. He earned a degree in Philosophy from the Sorbonne, became a teacher and helped Joseph Joffo to write Un sac de billes. He wrote a number of detective novels under his real name and later wrote non-genre novels as both Patrick Cauvin and Claude Klotz. As Cauvin, he was particularly successful with Monsieur Papa (1976) and E=mc2 (1977).
Henri Rochemont (1831–1913) was born in Paris and died in Aix-les-Bains. He was a journalist, playwright and politician. A radical with exreme left-wing views, he was exiled to Nouméa, New Caledonia in 1873, leaving on the same boat as Louise Michel. But he managed to escape along with several others, and after a round-the-world trip, he arrived in London where he was greeted by fellow Communard exiles. He returned to france in 1880 to become the director of the paper L'Intransigent, which was very much the voice of the former Communards. Unfortunately he was an anti-Dreyfusard on the grounds of anti-Semitism, causing him to lose much of his popularity, particularly among the working classes.
24 September 2016
Philippe Soupault (1897–1990) was a prolific poet and a journalist. He was a friend of André Breton and Louis Aragon, and with Breton wrote Les Champs magnétiques (1919), one of the first examples of automatic writing, and also a protype of surrealist writing. By the endd of the 1920s he was a noted journalist. He also wrote many novels and essays.
1828 – 1894
"MON BUT EST DE METTRE FIN AU
PRÉJUGÉ QUI EXCLUT LES FEMMES"'.
"My aim is to put an end to the prejudice which excludes women."
An anti-Catholic feminist, Maria Deraismes actively supported such anarchists as Louis Michel, André Léo and Elisée Reclus. Her statue stands at the entrance to the Square des Épinettes in the 17e.
Pierre et Jean is not a short story but a novel about the two very different brothers of the title, Pierre recently having qualified as a medical doctor (after some repeat student years) and Jean having just qualified as a lawyer. Both have shown some interest (if apparently only casually, maybe not seriously) in the young widow Mme Rosémilly, who has only seemed to show interest in Jean.
Initially this novel appears to concern Pierre's jealousy: Léon Maréchal, an old friend of the family, has died and leaves quite a fortune to Jean, but nothing to Pierre. Not unnaturally Pierre resents this, but resents it even more when he suspects, on information a female bar server acquaintance, that Maréchal may have been Jean's real father, which throws him into even more depression because she's perfectly right.
So Jean's only Pierre's half brother, his mother had Maréchal as a lover, and Pierre goes off as a doctor on a ship, leaving his mother with her guilt, his father in ignorance of the whole business, and Jean in his wealth with his new wife, the widow Rosémilly.
The back cover of this book suggests something of a mixture of Woody Allen and Kafka, particularly as a homage to Kafka. I was reminded more of Emmanuel Carrère's La Moustache, apart from the gruesome ending of that book. Certainly madness is suggested throughout both La Moustache and L'Idole, although L'Idole, I was forced to conclude, is more of a 'what if' book, a hypothesis in which the idea of instant fame is investigated.
Georges Frangin is the hero, the man around whom everything centres, the man who is recognised every day by many people who greet him, ask him for his autograph, pay for his drinks, etc. Initially he thinks they must have mistaken him for someone else, although when he asks one of his 'admirers' for his name the reply is 'Georges Frangin', the supposedly unknown narrator.
Frangin doesn't do television very well, although he tries, and is at the beginning welcomed because of his 'fame'. But fame, of course, doesn't last.
23 September 2016
Beigbeder says that he thought of Huis clos and Voyage au bout de la nuit, but those titles had already been taken: he'd of course raised the bar too high, and of course he was young. The novel only takes place in twelve hours, kind of Ulysses thinking: yes, of course. And he was re-published in a poche edition, which he should have refused, like the Groucho Marx example of refusal, etc. Of course.
And what banality, as he says. The best thing I found about the book was the fictional Marc Marronnier being invited by his acquaintance DJ Joss Dumoulin to the new and highly prestigious club Les Chiotttes (lit. 'The Shithouse'). Nice name.
Somehow this name seems quite fitting for a book filled with fashion freaks, cokeheads, sad types, and train spotters. Trainspotters? Yes, this novel is filled with lists: of things forgotten, invited VIPs, a DJ's playlist, etc. In a word, this is a mess.
Links to my other Beigbeder posts:
Frédéric Beigbeder: Mémoires d'un Jeune Homme Dérangé
Frédéric Beigbeder: 99 Francs
Frédéric Beigbeder: L'Amour dure trois ans | Love Lasts Three Years
Frédéric Beigbeder: Un roman français
21 September 2016
Not exactly the kind of book I normally read, in fact far from it, but I found this in the Cimetière du Montparnasse and couldn't resist reading my first Série Noire book. And it's, well, it's a very quick read and is filled with bodies, had a little romantic/sexual interest in it, is set in the Middle East, and its protagonists are essentially from the United States. That's all, only to add that I'll leave this somewhere else, joining in the spirit of bookcrossing.com.
Oh, and there seems to be very little biographical information on François Poli, who was born in Corsica in 1925 and the year of his death seems to be a mystery.
18 September 2016
FEMME DE LETTRES
DOUAI 1786 PARIS 1859'
1932 – 1984'
The tickets left on François Truffaut's grave speak volumes about his popularity. But how could I have missed this, the grave of the director of Jules et Jim, Les Quatre Cents Coups, Baisés volés, L'Enfant sauvage, L'Argent de poche, L'Homme qui aimait les femmes, Le Dernier Métro, etc, etc.
Torn between his faith in Catholism and his homosexuality, Jouandeau first attempted suicide in 1914. He married the former dancer Élizabeth Toulemont in 1929, who hoped to divert his attention from the male sex; however, she was unsuccessful and Jouandeau wrote frankly about his lifelong homosexuality in Chronique d'une passion (1949).
Jouandeau was also an antisemite and his Le Péril juif is a collection of his anti-Jewish writings. In 1941 he published an article about his admiration for Germany in the NRF, which was at the time under the antisemitic wing of Drieu la Rochelle, who of course killed himself after the Liberation. The paedophile Roger Peyrefitte makes references to Jouandeau as 'Marcel Jouvenceau', to which Jouandeau objected.
Jouandeau lived in Rueil-Malmaison from 1960 until his death.
Jean-Marc Debenedetti (1952–2009) was a new name to me, and he's not on the cemetery map either. But he's described on his grave as a '[P]oète, peintre et sculpture'. From what I can glean online, he was a student at the lycée Jacques Decour (grave also in Montmartre and to come later), became a teacher at the lycée Janson de Sailly and died of pneumonia. According to a short article by former teaching colleague Claude Courtot, he published his first collection of poetry in 1971, and he was particularly fond of surrealism, the work of Benjamin Péret ... and Mexico.
Many paintings were made of her, including the one above, which shows a detail from a work by François Gérard.