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Jean Moréas (1856 - 1910)
Related: Symbolism - French art - French literature - 1880s
Jean Moréas wrote the Symbolist Manifesto (1886), which he published in Le Figaro, in part as a means of distancing the esthetic of the rising generation of young writers from the "decadent" label that the press had placed on them.
Jean Moréas (April 15, 1856 - April 30, 1910), born Iannis Papadiamontopolos, was a Greek poet who wrote in the French language.
Moréas was born in Athens, into a distinguished Greek family; he was the son of a judge. He received a French education, and came to Paris in 1875 to study law. While in France, he began to move in literary circles, and became acquainted with Les Hydropathes, a group of French writers that included Alphonse Allais, Charles Cros, Guy de Maupassant, and Léon Bloy.
He published poetry in Lutèce and Le Chat noir, and collected his poems into two collections, Les Syrtes ("The Sandbanks") and Cantilènes, which were strongly influenced by Paul Verlaine.
He was initially an adherent of the school of Symbolism, and wrote the Symbolist Manifesto (1886), which he published in Le Figaro, in part as a means of distancing the esthetic of the rising generation of young writers from the "decadent" label that the press had placed on them. He was considered one of the most important Symbolist poets until the early 1890s. In 1891 as Symbolism became more openly associated with anarchism, he published Le Pèlerin passioné which rejected northern European and Germanic influences, such as Romanticism (as well as some aspects of Symbolism), in favor of Roman and Greek influences. This work laid the foundation for the Ecole Romane whose esthetic provided Charles Maurras with the ideological framework for the far-right Action Française.--translated from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean Moréas [Mar 2006]
Le 18 septembre 1886, Jean Moréas publie dans Le Figaro le Manifeste du Symbolisme. Paraissent la même année, dans La Vogue, Une Saison en enfer et les Illuminations d'Arthur Rimbaud. Le symbolisme va dépasser la conception parnassienne de l'art pour l'art par un absolu poétique. Une modernité est à la recherche d'elle-même. Des théories accompagnent ce mouvement avec Mallarmé, René Ghil, Gustave Kahn et la polémique autour du vers libre. Naîssent alors de nombreuses revues dont se détacheront Le Décadent (Anatole Baju), La Plume, La Revue Blanche (Maurice Maindron, Alfred Jarry), et Le Mercure de France d'Alfred Vallette (Remy de Gourmont, Pierre Louÿs, Jean de Tinan). Ce courant qui a élevé le langage jusqu'à son essence musicale et symbolique, débordera la seule poésie jusqu'à concerner le champ artistique tout entier. --http://gallica.bnf.fr/themes/LitXVIIIId.htm [Sept 2004]
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