Monday, January 18, 2016

Michel Tournier, the collector of myths – Le Figaro

The author of Friday and Erl King , the Prix Goncourt in 1970, died Monday in 91 years.

Asked about the death, Michel Tournier once made this statement: “I imagined an epitaph that pleases me:” I have loved you, you have made me a hundredfold. Thank you life! “” For many readers born in the 1970s, his name is inseparable from the first literary emotions. Studied in schools, his works were immediately seen as a kind of contemporary classics.

Michel Tournier was born in Paris on December 19, 1924. erudite, his family wants to German, Catholic and musical culture. His grandfather and his father is a pharmacist a broken jaws of 14. “I had a small Parisian very unhappy childhood. I literally was dying of that environment, “says the writer, however, has never supported Paris. Child, he spends all his holidays in Germany, where her parents are university research, and attends the birth of Hitlerism. Then he saw the Occupation in France. “I knew, at 18, the Liberation and I can tell you that this was an abominable time worse than the occupation.”

After the war, he studied law, philosophy follows the course of Bachelard and considering a teaching career. Alas, in 1949, it fails to aggregation, what he saw very badly. Years later, still speak of “dismay” about the failure to “punt this bloated, puffy, grotesque.”

So begins an almost bohemian life, made from hand, small rods. “I lived in a furnished hotel on the island St. Louis, which housed Pierre Boulez, Georges Arnaud, author of Wages of Fear, the theater stage director Armand Gatti, Georges de Caunes …”

Michel Tournier works for radio (Europe 1, with Louis Merlin, where he wrote commercials); television (from 1961 to 1965, he deals with the show “Darkroom” about photography, his great passion); and editing (Plon and Gallimard) …

However, in the early 1960s, it recalcitrant Parisien (“I’m completely allergic to any Parisian mythology”) settles in the valley Chevreuse, in the rectory of Choisel he had discovered there by the campsite. There he can live in seclusion and work on his first book, Friday or Limbo Pacific, published by Gallimard in 1967 and immediately rewarded by the Grand Prize novel by the French Academy. This rewriting of the Robinson Crusoe myth slice in the time of production by its depth, its relevance. At 45, this stranger gets a huge success that will be relayed by rewriting the book in a children’s version in 1971 under the title Friday or Wildlife. Balance sheet? Six million copies sold and translations thirty-five.

Immediately, Michel Tournier became a popular author small classes, where he often travels at conferences and debates. You hear advocating “an ideal of simplicity and clarity whose masters are called La Fontaine, Perrault, Lewis Carroll, Kipling, London, Saint-Exupéry. They were not writing for children, they wrote beautifully, that’s all. “

In 1970, The Ogre, his second novel, which deals with the myth of the ogre in Europe Nazi, is crowned in turn, this time by the Prix Goncourt obtained unanimously. Two years later, he will join the Goncourt Academy

In 1975, new theme. One of twins, he explores through Meteora. This book, probably his most ambitious, asked him years of research on all continents. “I’m in the school of Jules Renard and Colette (members of the Académie Goncourt, whose tradition is realistic and naturalistic) and when I speak of a borage or a hedgehog, I need to have had an experience, “is he then explained. Confessing: “For me, Zola is still the boss.”

Three novels, three huge success. “I am not an author of bestsellers, but long-seller,” says this author both very popular, but the father of a work more demanding. Thus it defined its ideal: “My great thing is to get out a novel in Ponson du Terrail the typewriter Hegel.” Tournier likes training novels, polyphonic constructions, the afterimages of the great myths. “I suffer from a dreadful sickness: I can not write unless I have something to say.”

Is that why in 1977 he published The Wind Paraclete, a test of autobiography? Therefore, his works are less ambitious, more concentrated, more openly turned to youth. News (The Heath Cock) in 1978; a tale (Pierrot, or Secrets of the night), a year later. And this unclassifiable mind still sign in 1988 a novel in the collection for teenagers Trail sign:. Angus

In order to write La Goutte d’Or, a novel on Immigrants (1985), the disciple of naturalists went live with the North African workers. “I am the only French writer – and I’m proud! ! – Who can handle a jackhammer “Despite some disaffection of criticism, Michel Tournier continues to publish: The MEDIANOCHE love (1989), Eleazar (1996). Still the writer denies being considered an artist, a mage. “I am a craftsman who absolutely refuse the prophetic side and the notion of inner life. I have an absolute model is JS Bach. “

Three years later, the secrecy and gruff man that he had been resigned from the Goncourt Academy, where he was admitted nearly forty years ago and retired to Choisel.


No comments:

Post a Comment