ADEN ARABIA PAUL NIZAN PDF

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Nizan tried to persuade the party to alter its position and failed. In the heated days of the party con demned Nizan as a traitor, and after the war they did much to annihilate his literary reputation. In , at the age of 35, Nizan was killed at Dunkirk while acting as an interpreter for the British. Antoine Bloye is Nizan's lyrical eulogy to both. A lesser novelist might have written the novel from the more direct and obvious point of view of a young man's anguish at his father's life and death.

But Nizan wrote this novel at that marvelous moment in a novelist's life when he has all the feelings and rage of childhood and all the techniques of a mature novelist to control them; and it is that tension between child and novelist which gives the novel its power — not Nizan's Marxist frame work.

By making Antoine Bloye the central character, rather than Bloye's son, all Nizan's fury at the society which contributed to the attrition of Bloye's flesh, soul and senses is tran scended into creating the world of Antoine Bloye.

His rage is held in perfect control because he knew his literary esthetics. The novelist wins the battle. But the child in Nizan helps the novelist Nizan win the battle. Nizan's father and that Bloye's death is a total death. The fate of the young intellectual son is irrele vant. Nizan knew we are doomed by our father's generation; our contem poraries are of less consequence.

In that respect he was very differ ent from his friend Sartre, who suf fered no such obsessions, Sartre was queasy at being a bourgeois, while Nizan suffered from being a hybrid; working class father, Catholic petit bourgeoise mother and himself talented bourgeois intellectual. Cer tainly during their lycee and Ecole Normale days Sartre and Nizan were very close. They studied philosophy together, outranked the other stu dents, and playfully thought of them selves as young intellectural super men who would divide the world between them.

They often thought of themselves as one person and at the start of their literary careers were often taken for one another—though at the time it was Nizan who was well in the lead, and it seems to have been Nizan who brought news of the world to Sartre, rather than the other way around.

Modernism, theories of negativism as a literary technique, Andre Breton, Marxism, experiments in film — all were grist for the mill. Nizan shocked Sartre by wanting to abandon the world for film making. Both Vigo and Nizan were more precise, more personally involved in their criticism of prewar France than was the more metaphysical Sartre. After all, a dead man is no longer a man.. After this funeral prologue Nizan gives us an exact accounting of Bloye's life.

Bloye becomes an old man young. His sexuality is crushed, he is alienated from his own class, his com panions and his family. When the industry changes, Bloye is kicked down, emotionally he disintegrates, he makes a few feeble attempts to revive his emotions by seeing old companions and wistfully entering bordello; finally he dies of a coro nary. The novel ends abruptly. She pierced the lobe of his ear with her scissors: no blood flowed. Sartre's essay discusses Nizan's re lation to his father brilliantly.

Indeed, there is not the slightest suggestion in the novel that Bloye's life might be redeemed in any way by having a son. Thus the strangely abrupt ending and — after Bloye's death — oblivion. Nizan was clearly haunted by his identification with his father. Paul Nizan him self then made a more drastic at tempt at suicide by driving his car into a ditch after his return to France in from his youthful flight to Arabia.

The French Communist party did indeed wage a hate campaign against Nizan after the war. Sartre, in , claims Communist perfidy as the rea son Nizan did not reach the attention of the young after World War II. Yet France was not then culturally mono lithic. If he had wanted to publish or write about Nizan, he could have done so.

The real reason Nizan was eclipsed was that the French were then on a binge of lit erary abstraction, and the king of it all was Sartre himself. Nobody needed a pessimistic writer who said France was putrid and rotten to the core, and who then went ahead and died for the bankrupt country he in veighed against. Richard Elman's foreword to this first American edition of Nizan's classic is informative, though he is absurd in describing Nizan as French Weatherman.

Archives The author's subject is his rage and fear. See the article in its original context from June 24, , Page Buy Reprints. View on timesmachine. TimesMachine is an exclusive benefit for home delivery and digital subscribers.

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Aden Arabia

Nizan tried to persuade the party to alter its position and failed. In the heated days of the party con demned Nizan as a traitor, and after the war they did much to annihilate his literary reputation. In , at the age of 35, Nizan was killed at Dunkirk while acting as an interpreter for the British. Antoine Bloye is Nizan's lyrical eulogy to both. A lesser novelist might have written the novel from the more direct and obvious point of view of a young man's anguish at his father's life and death.

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Aden Arabia by Paul Nizan

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