The History of Surrealism
Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2000 - 351 pagina's
"I believe," André Breton said, "in the future resolution of the states of dream and reality--in appearance so contradictory--in a sort of absolute reality, or surréalité." The Surrealist movement, born in the 1920s out of the ferment of Dada, committed to revolution against bourgeois rationalism, and inspired by Freudian exploration of the unconscious, has reverberated more widely and deeply than perhaps any other art movement in our century. Its automatism, biomorphic shapes, visionary mode, and manipulation of found objects mark the work of artists as different as Ernst, Miró, Magritte, and Dali.
Maurice Nadeau's History of Surrealism, first published in French in 1944 and in English in 1965, has become a classic. It is both lucid and authoritative--by far the best overall account of this complex movement. Nadeau traces the evolution of Surrealism, bringing to life its many internal debates about politics and art. He relates the movement to its intellectual and artistic environment. And he provides the statements and manifestos of Breton, Aragon, Tzara, and others.
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In the second part of his work, Aragon explains and justifies surrealism, trying,
here too, to tear it from the vulgarizers' hands: There is a legend current
nowadays that it is enough to learn the trick, and that forthwith texts of a great
poetic interest ...
Deploring the lack of rigor in previous action, thet inadequacy of the work done in
a realm almost entirely unexplored, it is without illusions but with courage and
confidence in the destiny of surrealism that Breton exclaims: “It is the innocence,
Apropos of surrealism, he remarked that it was “the only organized movement
that has succeeded in covering the distance separating” the two wars. He saw its
flowering in Julien Gracq's novel The Castle of Argol, “in which doubtless for the ...
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