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René Char - book author

René Char spent his childhood in Névons, the substantial family home completed at his birth, then studied as a boarder at the school of Avignon and subsequently, in 1925, a student at L'École de Commerce de Marseille, where he read Plutarch, François Villon, Racine, the German Romantics, Alfred de Vigny, Gérard de Nerval and Charles Baudelaire.

His first book, Cloches sur le cœur was published in 1928 as a compilation of poems written between 1922 and 1926. In late November 1929, Char moved to Paris, where he met Louis Aragon, André Breton, and René Crevel, and joined the surrealists. He remained active in the surrealist movement through the early 1930s but distanced himself gradually from the mid-1930s onward. Throughout his career, Char's work appeared in various editions, often with artwork by notable figures, including Kandinsky, Picasso, Braque, Miró, Matisse and Vieira da Silva.

Char was a friend and close associate of Albert Camus, Georges Bataille and Maurice Blanchot among writers, Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Nicolas de Staël, Georges Braque and Victor Brauner among painters. He was to have been in the car involved in the accident that killed both Camus and Gallimard, but there was not enough room, and returned instead that day by train to Paris.

The composer Pierre Boulez wrote three settings of Char's poetry, Le Soleil des eaux, Le visage nuptial, and Le marteau sans maître. A late friendship developed also between Char and Martin Heidegger, who described Char's poetry as "a tour de force into the ineffable" and was repeatedly his guest at La Thor in the Vaucluse.

René Char is the author of books: Fureur et mystère, Selected Poems, Leaves of Hypnos, Poems of Rene Char, Lettera Amorosa ; suivi de, Guirlande Terrestre, Stone Lyre: Poems of Rene Char, The Brittle Age and Returning Upland, Поезия. Избрано, This Smoke That Carried Us: Selected Poems, خاکستر ناتمام: گزیده شعرها

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Author Books

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01
« Pourquoi le cacher ? Ce n'est pas une poésie facile. Ses difficultés sont à proportion, en nous, des vieilles habitudes de voir et de leur résistance : René Char ou la jeunesse des mots, du monde... Il faut le lire et le relire pour, peu à peu, sentir en soi la débâcle des vieilles digues, de l'imagination paresseuse... Poésie qui se gagne, comme la terre promise de la légende et de l'histoire : celui-là qui y plante sa tente, qu'il soit assuré de s'en trouver plus fort et plus juste. »
02
The Selected Poems of Rene Char is a comprehensive, bilingual overview reflecting the poets wide stylistic and philosophical range, from aphorism to dramatic lyricism. In making their selections, the editors have chosen the voices of seventeen poets and translators (Paul Auster, Samuel Beckett, Cid Corman, Eugene Jolas, W.S. Merwin, William Carlos Williams, and James Wright, to name a few), in homage to a writer long held in highest esteem by the literary avant-garde.
03
A war had begun which, though most of his country was soon occupied, occupied Rene Char still more. He was about 36 then. And the poetic journal he kept of and at that time comes to us under the auspices of his Resistance code-name, Hypnos, the Greek divinity of Sleep. As for the present work, the "leaves" remind the translator of Rimbaud's from a Season in Hell, but this is no longer a private hell expatiated into a vision of the human condition, but a public hell drawn from, exceeded by, a sense of responsibility.
04
René Char (1907-1988) who was also a member of the French Resistance, is regarded as one of France's most important poets of the 20th century. This collection spans fifty years of Char's career, and represents the full range of his poetic voice.

Translated from the French and annotated by Mary Ann Caws and Jonathan Griffin.
05
ux versions d'un même poème : la première, publiée en 1952, est illustrée de 16 collages de Jean Arp. Le poème fut repris et remanié l'année suivante et publié avec 24 lithographies de Georges Braque. Le volume est édité à l'occasion du Printemps des poètes 2007 qui a pour thème les lettres d'amour.
06
A new bilingual (French & English) edition of Selected Poems from one of the 20th Century's most majestic poets. Acclaim for Carlson's work has included accolades from Donald Revell, poet and translator of Rimbaud and Apollinaire: "Rene Char is the conscience of modern French poetry and also its calm of mind. Nancy Naomi Carlson, in these splendid translations, casts new light upon the sublime consequence of Char's poetic character, and in Stone Lyre the case for sublimity is purely made." And Cole Swensen, poet, translator, and founding editor of La Presse, has said: "Early Surrealist, resistance fighter, anti-nuclear activist, and exquisite poet, Rene Char is at the heart of 20th century French poetry. In this insightful selection from across Char's long career, Carlson gives English-language readers a real sense of Char's depth and breadth. And her masterful translations catch the barely contained drama that gives Char's work such tension and presence, while her excellent ear picks up not only the sound relationships that weave through the originals, but also their delicate, seductive rhythms.""
07
Poetry. Bilingual Edition. Translated from the French by Gustaf Sobin. When Gustaf Sobin arrived in France at the age of twenty-seven in 1963, he befriended the poet Rene Char, who, as Sobin writes, "taught me my trade." "Rene Char taught me, first, to read particulars: that the meticulously observed detail, drawn from nature, could provide the key to the deepest reaches of the imaginary. One and the other, the visible and the invisible, were but the interface of a single, singular, vibratory surface: that of the poem itself." THE BRITTLE AGE AND RETURNING UPLAND are two volumes from Char's work of the mid to late 1960s that Sobin chose to translate in full. Here, side by side with Char's French text, it is possible to see Sobin building his poetic vocabulary within and as a result of the practice of his mentor, "scrupulously tracking the very trajectories of desire, [leading] one onto the sonorous landscapes of the revelatory."
09

Admired by Heidegger for the profundity of his poetic philosophy, Char (1907–1988) was also a hero of the French Resistance and in the 1960s a militant anti-nuclear protester. For a time associated with the Surrealist movement, his poetry later changed to work that confronted major moral, political, and artistic concerns of the 20th century. The exquisite translations by Susanne Dubroff maintain the simplicity of vision and expression that link Char to the poet-philosophers of ancient Greece. Presented side by side in French and in English, the book offers a comprehensive selection of work that spans the life of this great poet and will be a valuable additon to the libraries of both readers and students of either language.