Paul Eluard Biography, French Poet and Founder of the Surrealist Movement


Who was Paul Eluard? Information about French poet and one of the founders of the Surrealist movement Paul Eluard biography, life story.

Paul Eluard


Paul Eluard, the pen name of Eugene Grindel (14 December 1895 – 26 November 1952), French poet, who was one of the founders of the sürrealist movement and one of the great French poets of the 20th century. He was born in St.Denis on Dec. 14, 1895. Illness forced him into a sanatorium in Davos, Switzerland, in 1911-1913, where he read avidly. After serving in World War I, he began writing in the Dadaist style. He then embraced surrealism, writing some texts in collaboration with Max Ernst, Andre Breton, and Rene Char. Eluard remained associated with the movement until 1939. Notable among his writings of this period were Capitale de la douleur (1926), L’Amour, la poesie (1929), and La Vie immediate (1932).

During World War II, filuard was active in the Resistance and became increasingly interested in pacifism, communism, and social problems. His patriotic themes are revealed in Atı Rendezvous allemand (1945). In his last years he wrote the noteworthy Poesie ininterrompue (1946), Le Livre ouvert (1947), and many poems on his anguish at the death of his second wife, Nusch. He died in Charenton-le-Pont on Nov. 18, 1952.

The themes of human brotherhood, of dreams, and of sensual love give unity to Eluard’s poetry. The essential word for describing his work is perhaps “purity.” His vision of the individual’s relationship with nature and with hıımanity is both lofty and beautiful, and the eroticism of physical love is transcended by dreams and tenderness and hope. His metaphors, often drawn from nature or from simple and essential surroundings, are strangely arresting because of the unorthodox contexts in which they are found.



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