Pub. Date:
Brill Academic Publishers, Inc.
Searching for Presence: Yves Bonnefoy's Writings on Art

Searching for Presence: Yves Bonnefoy's Writings on Art

by Robert W. Greene


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Yves Bonnefoy’s writings have won him praise not only from readers and critics of French poetry, but also, thanks to translations into many other languages, from readers and critics of poetry far beyond the francophone world. Indeed, Bonnefoy may be the most admired poet to have emerged in France since World War II. Yet his art criticism, dazzling in its scope, possibly as original as his poetry, is yet to receive the attention it deserves. Searching for Presence: Yves Bonnefoy’s Writings on Art undertakes to fill that lacuna.
Elusive, skirting the ineffable, the notion of presence has haunted Bonnefoy for decades. Central to the notion for the poet is the fleeting experience of mutuality between self and other, of lightning transaction in a transient world, of a shared mortal destiny, hence a plenitude within finitude. In an age when so many of his contemporaries seem to view any form of art as wallpaper spanning a void, Bonnefoy’s faith in presence is all the more welcome. Focusing on his art criticism, the aspect of the poet’s oeuvre in which the notion of presence is the most salient, this study tries to do justice to that fidelity.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9789042017924
Publisher: Brill Academic Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 11/01/2004
Series: Faux Titre Series , #250
Pages: 204
Product dimensions: 5.76(w) x 8.62(h) x 0.58(d)

About the Author

Robert W. Greene, professor emeritus of French, University at Albany, State University of New York, is the author of The Poetic Theory of Pierre Reverdy (University of California Press, 1967), Six French Poets of Our Time (Princeton University Press, 1979) and Just Words: Moralism and Metalanguage in Twentieth-Century French Fiction (Pennsylvania State University Press, 1993), and the editor of Dalhousie French Studies, 21 (Fall-Winter 1991), devoted to “Art Criticism by French Poets Since World War II”.

Table of Contents

Part I. Historical Background
1. Baudelaire’s Salons as a Source Book
2. The Emergence of Poésie Critique
Part II. A Twentieth-Century Context
3. Apollinaire, Malraux and a Space for Poésie Critique
4. Other Options for Poésie Critique : Ponge and Char
5. A Bonnefoy Mentor : Pierre Jean Jouve
Part III. Yves Bonnefoy’s Art Criticism
6. Gothic Murals and Baroque Excess
7. Giacometti and Presence
8. From the Quattrocento to Tiepolo
9. Twentieth-Century Art
10. Presence in Delacroix and Shakespeare
11. Forms of Exchange
Part IV. Bonnefoy’s Legacy
12. A Bonnefoy Heir: Claude Esteban

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