In praise of folly: Didier Daeninckx, Caché dans la maison des fous

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationBook/Film/Article review

Abstract

To launch his new collection, “Sur le fil,” whose aim is to feature “novels in which the destiny of a poet meets History with a capital H,”[1] the publisher and author Bruno Doucey made what was perhaps an obvious decision: as a companion to his own book on Max Jacob,[2] he would invite Didier Daeninckx to pen a work as well. Daeninckx was an excellent choice, for a variety of reasons. Firstly, although he made his name in the roman noir (before extending his range to more mainstream fiction), he has a long-established liking for poetry.[3] Secondly, he has an equally enduring interest in history: well aware that numerous sensitive issues — relating principally to French colonialism, the Occupation, World War I and the Paris Commune — have been swept under the carpet, he has constantly, and provocatively, challenged “official” accounts of the past and their obfuscations. Thirdly and finally, Daeninckx is one of the most successful and visible writers on the contemporary French literary scene, so having him contribute would help to advertise the new series. When approached, Daeninckx readily accepted, and he did not have to look far for his subject. He simply had to turn, as he had in many previous stories, to his own background for inspiration: his grand-father once bought a plot of land — soon to become the family home — from a certain Eugène Grindel, whose son was later to achieve fame as the poet Paul Éluard. Daeninckx knew that, during the Occupation, Éluard had hidden in the asile (asylum) in Saint-Alban-sur-Limagnole to escape from the Gestapo. He similarly knew that this particular story (with the resulting production of new poems) was not widely known, which was yet another incentive for him to tell it; so tell it he did.
LanguageEnglish
Volume6
No.6
Specialist publicationFiction and Film for French Historians: A Cultural Bulletin
Publication statusPublished - 18 Apr 2016

Fingerprint

Occupations
Colonialism
History
World War I
Poetry
Saints
Paris
Nuclear Family
Fathers
Names
Motivation
Economics
Poet
Cache
Folly
Paul Eluard
Launch
Fame
Poem
Fiction

Keywords

  • 1914-1945
  • German occupation
  • occupied france
  • psychiatry
  • resistance
  • World War II

Cite this

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title = "In praise of folly: Didier Daeninckx, Cach{\'e} dans la maison des fous",
abstract = "To launch his new collection, “Sur le fil,” whose aim is to feature “novels in which the destiny of a poet meets History with a capital H,”[1] the publisher and author Bruno Doucey made what was perhaps an obvious decision: as a companion to his own book on Max Jacob,[2] he would invite Didier Daeninckx to pen a work as well. Daeninckx was an excellent choice, for a variety of reasons. Firstly, although he made his name in the roman noir (before extending his range to more mainstream fiction), he has a long-established liking for poetry.[3] Secondly, he has an equally enduring interest in history: well aware that numerous sensitive issues — relating principally to French colonialism, the Occupation, World War I and the Paris Commune — have been swept under the carpet, he has constantly, and provocatively, challenged “official” accounts of the past and their obfuscations. Thirdly and finally, Daeninckx is one of the most successful and visible writers on the contemporary French literary scene, so having him contribute would help to advertise the new series. When approached, Daeninckx readily accepted, and he did not have to look far for his subject. He simply had to turn, as he had in many previous stories, to his own background for inspiration: his grand-father once bought a plot of land — soon to become the family home — from a certain Eug{\`e}ne Grindel, whose son was later to achieve fame as the poet Paul {\'E}luard. Daeninckx knew that, during the Occupation, {\'E}luard had hidden in the asile (asylum) in Saint-Alban-sur-Limagnole to escape from the Gestapo. He similarly knew that this particular story (with the resulting production of new poems) was not widely known, which was yet another incentive for him to tell it; so tell it he did.",
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journal = "Fiction and Film for French Historians: A Cultural Bulletin",
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In praise of folly : Didier Daeninckx, Caché dans la maison des fous. / Morris, Alan.

In: Fiction and Film for French Historians: A Cultural Bulletin, Vol. 6, No. 6, 18.04.2016.

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationBook/Film/Article review

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KW - resistance

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JO - Fiction and Film for French Historians: A Cultural Bulletin

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