Selected Writings

Gerard de Nerval - Author

Richard Sieburth - Translator

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ISBN 9780140446012 | 448 pages | 01 Aug 1999 | Penguin Classics | 5.07 x 7.79in | 18 - AND UP
  • PEN BOMC Translation Prize
Summary of Selected Writings Summary of Selected Writings Reviews for Selected Writings An Excerpt from Selected Writings
This selection of writings—the first such comprehensive gathering to appear in English—provides an overview of Nerval's work as a poet, belle-lettrist, short-story writer and autobiographer. In addition to "Aurélia", the memoir of his madness, "Sylvie" (considered a 'masterpiece' by Proust), and the hermetic sonnets of "The Chimeras", this volume includes Nerval's Doppelgänger tales and experimental fictions. Selections from his correspondence demonstrate a lucid awareness of the strategies by which nineteenth-century psychiatry consigned his visionary imagination to the purgatory of mental illness.

Selected Writings confirms Nerval's place as a precursor of the French Symbolists and as a vital model for such twentieth-century writers as Marcel Proust, André Breton, Antonin Artaud, and Michel Leiris.

Selected Writings Introduction
Further Reading
Shadow Selves
Introductory Note
The King of Bedlam
The Tale of Caliph Hakim

Memories of the Valois
Introductory Note

Unreal Cities
Introductory Note
To My Friend Théophile Gautier
October Nights

Introductory Note
Drafts of "Aurélia"

Introductory Note
The Gramont Manuscript
The Chimeras

'For a long time now, poetry has been thought of as a distant land, and poetry in translation seems to legitimize even further our unwillingness to take the trip. Richard Siedburth's recent annotated translation of Gérard de Nerval's Selected Writings makes the journey worthwhile' Kalliopi Nikolopoulou, Lingua Franca