Palimpsests of the Real in Recent French Poetry


The richness and diversity of poetic voices in France since the mid-twentieth century sharpen the challenge of charting the poetic landscape in ways that are accessible and cohesive. Since poetry in France has long demonstrated a predisposition to philosophical questions. Palimpsests of the Real in Recent French Poetry reads the work of six poets through the lens of the Pre-Socratics. The poets discussed range from the well-known – Jacques Dupin, André du Bouchet, Eugène Guillevic – to the lesser celebrated – Jean-Louis Chrétien, Céline Zins, and Emmanuel Hocquard. What binds these six together is an interest in the real, and a fascination with the ways of sensing one’s world, of experiencing time, unity, memory, and change. For each poet, the aesthetic character of the work takes precedence, and its presentation is informed by the philosophical groundwork laid by ancient thinkers.
Written not only for specialists but also for students and all readers with a general interest in literature and poetry, this book provides introductory material to each poet considered as well as offers critical readings that never stray far from the poetic texts.

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Acknowledgements Introduction Jacques DUPIN: Parmenidean Echoes Jean-Louis CHRETIEN: Response and the Voice of Disclosure Memory and the Poetics of Loss Beauty and the Imperative for Order Eugene GUILLEVIC: Of Cosmos and the Unbounded The Geometry Connection Celine ZINS: Finding One’s Way: Poetry and the Mind’s Eye Body Rhetoric and the Self Andre du BOUCHET: First Principles and matière de parole Seeing the Unseeable Emmanuel HOCQUARD : Immutability and Change Conclusion Selected Bibliography