See also: Pierre Benoit (homonymy)
Years of youthWire of an officer of career, Pierre Benoit was born with Albi, where his/her father is then in garrison. Although it lived there only the first year of its existence, Benoit estimated to have preserved a bond privileged with this city, and especially with his cathedral, in which it saw one of the sources of his romantic inspiration. Thus he will explain in a text of 1956 qu ' “a parabola will never have ceased haunting imagination: that of the insane virgins and the wise virgins”: They, were painted there with the ridge of my cathedral, this morning of July 1886 when one deposited the salt of the sacrament of redemption on the lips of the child of which the eyes even were not opened yet with the light. If it could not, him, to contemplate them, they, they, had already foreseen it. They knew that the time was not further where he would not live any more but for them. For better and for worse, they would be, the ones and the others, its inséparabes partners, stimulating, weak the or strong ones, of the intrigues which they would be by him charged to untie, with good or worse knowledge.
It accompanies then his father, affected as from 1887 in North Africa (in Tunisia then in Algérie.) In 1907, after having achieved its military service (in Algeria always), it goes to Montpellier, where it prepares a double license of letters and right, then to Sceaux, where he becomes house master. It is at that time that he discovers, while attending their conferences, Charles Maurras and Maurice Barrès, which becomes, and will remain, its intellectual guides.
In 1910, Pierre Benoit is received with the contest of the ministry for the State education and the Art schools. He publishes in the same time his first poems, for which he obtains a price of the Société of the men of letters. He will be on the other hand less happy with the publication of the collection Diadumène (1914): in ten years, it will run out of them only five specimens, sold to a single, the patron André Germain, directing purchaser of the poetic review the Double Bouquet .
Mobilized at the beginning of the First World War, Benoit falls seriously sick after the Bataille from Charleroi: he spends several months to the hospital, then is demobilized. This experiment of the face however will have been sufficiently traumatisante to transform into pacifist convinced the young man who, in a letter which it sent to his mother in 1914, confait his enthusiasm with the idea to him to take part in a “holy war. ”
It finds after the armistice his companions of pre-war period: Francis Carco, Roland Dorgelès and Pierre Mac Orlan, with which it founds an association: “The Dry dock” (Henri Béraud also forms part of it), which in particular proposes to reward the worst book for the year. The price in is, for the author of the preceded work, a train ticket to join its native soil accompanied by a letter where it is asked to him to return from there never again. In 1919, the work chosen, unanimously, is a collective work: the Treated of Versailles.
In addition, always maurassien and thus near to the political circles which revolve around the French Action, Pierre Benoit brings the same year his support for proclamation “For a party of the intelligence” of Henri Massis.
First novels and the first successesAt this time, Pierre Benoit is more only the neo-romantic poet only he was before the war: he made an conspicuous entry in the world of the novelists in vogue, with Kœnigsmark (1918), whose public success is considerable, and who misses little obtaining the Prix Goncourt (he was supported by André Suarès and Leon Daudet.) Atlantis , published the following year, is a best-seller more still fulgurating. The catholic writer Louis Chaigne will analyze into 1936 the reasons of the passion of the public for this colonial novel by the historical economic situation in which it appeared: Atlantis is the book that much waited to leave the nightmare of the terrible years lived in mud and under the shells and to be based with softness on more serene days. Supported actively by Maurice Bars, the book of Pierre Benoit receives the Grand Prix of the novel of the French Academy for 1919.
From 1920 with its death, and the rate/rhythm of approximately one per annum, Pierre Benoit publishes forty novels to the editions Albin Michel, imposing itself like the Master of the novel of adventures, although he does not scorn to approach other romantic fields, as with the Miss of Ferté , “most literary and deepest of its works”, and considered for this reason as its masterpiece.
The writer sphere-trotterIn spite of success, Pierre Benoit is bored at his post of librarian to the ministry for the State education and multiplies the escapades: thus it organizes a race of tortoises to the Palais Royal, then, in 1922, its false removal by members of the Sinn Féin, which, if it amuses the press, scandalizes part of his/her preserving friends, who saw already evil eye his many affairs.
It is thus with enthusiasm that it agrees in 1923 the proposal of the daily newspaper the Newspaper to go to Turkey in the capacity as special correspondent, who gives the opportunity to him to forsake the public office and to release himself from his partner of the time (Fernande Leferrer.) Crossing the Anatolia in war, it will interview Mustafa Kémal with Ankara. It goes then in Palestine and Syria, from where it learns with emotion death from Bars.
From 1923 to 1938, then of 1947 to 1953, Pierre Benoit exerts, parallel to his activities of writer, the trade of international reporter for the account of several newspapers (France-Evening, the Intransigent), which leads it to go in the Far East and Iran (1926-1927), in Australia, with Tahiti and the the Antilles (1928), in Tunisia (1931), with the Lebanon (1932), in the Indian Ocean (1933), in Austria (1938), in Argentine and with the Brazil (1950), etc At the time of some of its displacements, Benoit meets and interviews political personalities of foreground: Hailé Sélassié Ier, then Benito Mussolini in 1935 (it in vain tries to persuade the fascistic leader not to undertake to invade the Ethiopia), Hermann Goering in 1938 (the interview, during which the dignitary Nazi evokes only his works of art, will not be published.) After the Second world war, it meets the Portuguese dictator twice António de Oliveira Salazar, to which it dedicates a great admiration.
These many voyages will nourish the work of Pierre Benoit: all its novels, with the only exception of the Lake salted (which is held with the the United States), have as a framework of the countries which he visited. The reports that it car are also the means of defending, to each time the opportunity arises some, the colonial Empire of France, defense which takes less the form of an apology for the colonial adventure than that “of a friendship free-exotic”, and is often associated with a solid anglophobia.
The Academy, the cinema and the policyPierre Benoit becomes into 1929 pésident of the Société of the men of letters, then it integrates the French Academy in 1931, its speech of reception being marked the November 24th 1932 with Saint-Céré, in the Quercy where, between two voyages, it resides since 1925 and which became its country of adoption: Between Dax, cradle of the miens, Albi where I was born, Paris… I realized that Saint-Céré occupied about the center of the triangle determined by these three cities. Sign of its love for this area, Pierre Benoit will write three novels in homage to Quercy: Alberte (1926), the Lunch of Sousceyrac (1931) and Lunegarde (1942.)
Years 1930 are also those during which Piere Benoit, whose novels are adapted to the cinema since the whole beginning of the previous decade (an adaptation of Atlantis due to Jacques Feyder is turned since 1921), is interested in a more regular way in the cinema, and collaborates in the setting in images of its works: thus he writes the dialogs of Châteleine of Lebanon (of Jean Epstein, 1933), and the scenario of Boissière (of Fernand Rivers, 1937). He also signs an adaptation of the Tarass Boulba of Gogol (realized by Alexis Granowsky in 1936), then during the Occupation, those of two works of Balzac: the colonel Chabert (Rene Henaff, 1943) and Vautrin (Pierre Balk, 1943.)
Many film adaptations of the novels of Pierre Benoit will be carried out until in the years 1950, time as from which the interest of the public for the writer academician starts to weaken. Several of those which are carried out in years 1930, in accordance with the uses of the time, are carried out in two versions: one in French, the other in English or German, with different actors (except in general for the main role), but by preserving same photography, same cutting and the same assembly: it is the case in particular for Atlantis of Georg Wilhelm Pabst (1932), of which there exists a German version ( Die Herrin von Atlantis ), with in both cases Brigitte Helm in the role of Antinéa, or of the Kœnigsmark of Maurice Tourneur (1935), also turned in an english language version.
Lastly, during this same period, Pierre Benoit does not forget his convictions maurrassiennes and monarchists: he engages in 1936 against the Popular front, and is those which work to make elect Maurras with the French Academy (what is made thing on June 9th, 1938.)
The war and ReleasePierre Benoit always maintained the ambivalent relationship with Germany, country which “haunts it since childhood. ” In the study that it devoted to him, the Flemish writer Johan Daisne will write that Benoit incarnated “the hereditary enmity between Germany in France and in fact a fight in love. ” Pilot of the Anschluss in 1938 (it is then with Vienna) the author of Kœnigsmark hopes until the end in a Franco-German agreement. The defeat of 1940 is for him a shock. It estimates that the parliamentary mode is responsible for the rout, but does not invest itself therefore in the support for the Régime of Vichy, from which it sees of an evil eye compromisings with the German occupant, and in spite of the sympathy which the war veteran whom it east tests for the marshal Pétain, preferring to withdraw itself on its grounds of Quercy.
In September 1944 it nevertheless is stopped for Collaboration and is transferred to Fresnes, before being slackened in April 1945 after six months spent in prison, washed of any suspicion. It is however interdict of publication during two years. Jean Paulhan and Louis Aragon inter alia intercedes in its favor and makes stripe its name of the black list of the writers. Pierre Benoit nevertheless is deeply wounded by this test, him which refused any compromising with the mode of Vichy (in particular the position of director of the Th3e4atre Fran1cais that the Minister of education main road in February 1941 proposed to him) as well as the translation and German the film adaptation of its works.
In 1947, Pierre Benoit, “tired of the tempestuous adventures, épous an young woman of the provincial upper middle class. ”
Last yearsIn 1950, Pierre Benoit celebrates, with the Ritz of Paris, the exit of his new novel, Agriates , which makes it join again with success. Sign that he is always a snuffed author of the public, when the French general Librairie lance the Book of pocket in 1953, it is Kœnigsmark which is selected to inaugurate the new collection. Four years later, in 1957, Pierre Benoit celebrates his five millionth sold book, at the same time as the exit of its fortieth novel ( Montsalvat .) The same year are published the discussions with Paul Guimard that it gave to the radio, under the title De Koenigsmark with Montsalvat .
In 1959, Paul Morand, old friend of Pierre Benoit, is had a presentiment of to integrate the French Academy. But the general De Gaulle, made single in the history of the French Academy, opposes its veto to the election of this former ambassador of Vichy. Outraged, Benoit resigns of the Academy (refused resignation: indeed, “the Academy does not recognize the resignation of its members, the resigner being only authorized, if it wishes it, not to attend the meetings any more. ”)
Patient since years, Marcelle, the woman of Pierre Benoit, dies on May 28th, 1960” (that whose Georges Pérec in his collection “will remember” memories, without showing itself too much convinced by the process.)
More singular still, the author got busy to make so that all its novels have the same number of pages
|Random links:||Johann Christian Ludwig Hellwig | Computer Integrated Manufacturing | Dours | Obrež | Diurnal movement | Comté_d'Okfuskee,_l'Oklahoma|