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Dancing and Flirting

Mark Ford: Apollinaire, 24 May 2018

Zone: Selected Poems 
by Guillaume Apollinaire, translated by Ron Padgett.
NYRB, 251 pp., £9.99, January 2016, 978 1 59017 924 6
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Selected Poems 
by Guillaume Apollinaire, translated by Martin Sorrell.
Oxford, 281 pp., £9.99, November 2015, 978 0 19 968759 6
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... but unconventional young aristocrat of Russian, Polish and Italian descent, the poet Apollinaire was given no fewer than five prénoms by his mother: his full name, in its French version, was Guillaume-Albert-Wladimir-Alexandre-Apollinaire de Kostrowitzky. During his ...

The Lovely Redhead

Frederick Seidel, 30 August 2012

... I’d rather talk about my periodontist and my MacBook Air. Don’t try to talk to me about Guillaume Apollinaire. Laugh at me if you like, but actually it’s sad. You people who know, know love is brief and being old is bad, Know tribal wars devour the world, and little children are starving. Five million orphans in Ethiopia aren’t riding ...

At the Barnes

Bridget Alsdorf: On Marie Laurencin, 25 January 2024

... the French artist Marie Laurencin cut off her long plaited hair and posted it to her former lover, Guillaume Apollinaire, who was serving at the front. It was an artistic as well as a personal sacrifice: interlacing serpentine lines are a recurring motif in Laurencin’s work, and femininity its primary theme. In Woman with a Fan (1912), a probable ...


Hal Foster: ‘Inventing Abstraction’, 7 February 2013

... a synchronic network of charismatic ‘connectors’, such as Vasily Kandinsky, F.T. Marinetti, Guillaume Apollinaire, Francis Picabia, Tristan Tzara, Theo van Doesburg and Alfred Stieglitz, all of whom were polemicists (critics, editors, exhibition-makers) as much as they were artists. Like the diagram, the exhibition looks back to the period when ...

When the beam of light has gone

Peter Wollen: Godard Turns Over, 17 September 1998

The Films of Jean-Luc Godard 
by Wheeler Winston Dixon.
SUNY, 290 pp., £17.99, March 1997, 0 7914 3285 8
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Speaking about Godard 
by Kaja Silverman and Harun Farocki.
New York, 256 pp., $55, July 1998, 0 8147 8066 0
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... although the voice that we hear on the soundtrack is mysteriously speaking some lines of poetry by Guillaume Apollinaire. In a way, this aberrant moment summed up Godard’s appeal for me – the perverse mixture of Modernism with B-movies, as if an Apollinaire poem somehow fitted quite naturally with a low-budget ...

Playing Fields, Flanders Fields

Paul Delany, 21 January 1982

War Diary 1913-1917: Chronicle of Youth 
by Vera Brittain, edited by Alan Bishop.
Gollancz, 382 pp., £8.50, September 1981, 0 575 02888 2
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The English Poets of the First World War 
by John Lehmann.
Thames and Hudson, 144 pp., £6.95, August 1981, 0 500 01256 3
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Voices from the Great War 
by Peter Vansittart.
Cape, 303 pp., £7.95, November 1981, 0 224 01915 5
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The Little Field-Marshal: Sir John French 
by Richard Holmes.
Cape, 427 pp., £12.50, November 1981, 0 224 01575 3
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... of ‘might and mind’ (Thomas Mann) or quite simply, as for Rilke, ‘a god at last’. And Guillaume Apollinaire spoke for all in announcing that, on 31 August 1914, everything had changed: Nations were rushing together to know each other through and through The dead were trembling with fear in their dark dwellings. What no one foresaw was that ...

Who Whips Whom

Leland de la Durantaye: Sade, 19 February 2015

Justine et autres romans 
by D.A.F. de Sade, edited by Michel Delon and Jean Deprun.
Gallimard, 1152 pp., €60, October 2014, 978 2 07 014669 7
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... century, which it is for me.’ The individual​ most responsible for this celebration of Sade is Guillaume Apollinaire, who not only predicted that Sade would ‘dominate the 20th century’ but also deemed him ‘the freest spirit there has ever been’. A number of things in Apollinaire’s encomium of Sade are ...

The Past’s Past

Thomas Laqueur, 19 September 1996

Sites of Memory, Sites of Mourning: The Great War in European Cultural History 
by Jay Winter.
Cambridge, 310 pp., £12.95, September 1996, 0 521 49682 9
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... but it did reap the cultural harvest of modernity. Consider Winter’s treatment of the poet Guillaume Apollinaire in relation to one recurrent theme: the return of the dead. It is heard first in Blaise Cendrars’s account of the poet’s funeral at Père Lachaise where this friend of the dead man – and Abel Gance’s collaborator – saw and ...

The wind comes up out of nowhere

Charles Nicholl: The Disappearance of Arthur Cravan, 9 March 2006

... he looks like an artist’ – the latter a term of execration. Another writer he tangled with was Guillaume Apollinaire, who challenged him to a duel further to some obscene comments about the painter Marie Laurencin. Other provocations were issued in a series of Cravan ‘lectures’, anarchic improvisations somewhat like the ‘happenings’ of the ...

Trapped with an Incubus

Clair Wills: Shirley Hazzard, 21 September 2023

Shirley Hazzard: A Writing Life 
by Brigitta Olubas.
Virago, 564 pp., £12.99, June, 978 0 349 01286 5
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... Steegmuller – who had by then published several major biographies (Flaubert, Maupassant, Apollinaire), but was best known as a translator of Flaubert – had met Greene years before in America, when he was still with his first wife. Hazzard would go on to write a clutch of spiky, ambitious novels including The Bay of Noon (1970), The Transit of Venus ...

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