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Claude Eugène Henri Simon

Simon, Claude Eugène Henri, 1913–2005, French novelist. He was born in Antananarivo, Madagascar, and studied at Paris, Oxford, and Cambridge. He fought in World War II both as a soldier and later in the resistance. During the 1950s he became known as one of the major writers of the French nouveau roman [new novel] (see French literature); his style is characterized by the use of interior monologue and an absence of punctuation, showing the influence of William Faulkner and James Joyce. Some of his later works are nearly without narrative structure and plot. His 15 novels include Le Tricheur [the trickster] (1945), Le Vent (1957; tr. The Wind, 1959), La Route de Flandres (1960; tr. The Flanders Road, 1962), Histoire (1967, tr. 1968), Leçon de Choses (1975, tr. The World about Us, 1983), L'Acacia (1990, tr. The Acacia, 1991), and the autobiographical Le Jardin des Plantes (1997, tr. 2001). Simon was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1985.

See A. Duncan, ed., Claude Simon: New Directions, Collected Papers (1985); R. Birn and K. Gould, ed., Orion Blinded: Essays on Claude Simon (1981); C. Britton, Claude Simon: Writing the Visible (1987); R. Sarkonak, Understanding Claude Simon (1989); A. Duncan, Claude Simon: Adventures in Words (1994); M. M. Brewer, Claude Simon: Narratives without Narrative (1995); J. H. Duffy, Reading between the Lines: Claude Simon and the Visual Arts (1998).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: French Literature: Biographies


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