A person is serious if he believes in what he would
-- Milan Kundera, "Introduction
to a Variation," Jacques and His Master: An Homage to Diderot in
Three Acts, translated by Michael
Henry Heim (New York: HarperPerennial, 1985), p. 6.
Right now (what a word, now, what a dumb lie)
. . .
-- Julio Cortázar, "Blow-Up,"
Blow-Up and Other Stories, translated by Paul Blackburn (New York:
Pantheon, 1985), p. 118.
Reality exists only through experience, and it must
experience. However, once related, even personal experience becomes a
narrative. Reality can’t be verified and doesn’t need to be, that can
be left for the reality of life experts to debate. What is important is
life. Reality is simply that I am sitting by the fire in this room which
is black with grime and smoke and that I see the light of the fire dancing
in his eyes. Reality is myself, reality is only the perception of this
instant and it can’t be related to another person. All that needs to be
said is that outside, a mist is enclosing the green-blue mountain in a
haze and your heart is reverberating with the rushing water of a
-- Gao Xingjian, Soul
Mountain, translated by Mabel Lee (New York: HarperCollins, 2000).
Seriously, now, really: Milan Kundera, a Czech
writer, settled in France in 1975, became a
citizen, and in the mid-1990s adopted French as his primary means
of literary expression.
Julio Cortázar, raised in
Argentina, moved to Paris in 1954 and spent most of his time there
until his death in 1984. Gao Xingjian, who received the Nobel Prize
in Literature for the year 2000, was born in Ganzhou in
eastern China, but left China in 1987 and is now a French citizen, living
in Paris. From three different, distant locations these three writers
France, (like so many others), finding in
its culture and heritage a source of nourishment for the mind and
and the other sort of nourishment as well. Perhaps you'll find things
interest on this page to convey something of the
inexhaustible depths of French culture that
have made it an attractive magnet in our planetary culture. Vive la France!
Paul Bénichou — In recent years
the work of Paul
Bénichou (1908-2001) has been the focus of my scholarship. I have
created a web
page devoted to his work, containing a number of critical studies of
Bénichou as well as a brief biography and an annotated
bibliography. I have published a translation of Le sacre de l'écrivain (1973), have completed a translation of
Le Temps des prophètes (1977) that I hope to publish soon, and am working on a translation of Les mages
Joie de vivre Order
authentic French products for kitchen, home, and table!
Bob's French Links Scroll through "Tennessee Bob"'s extensive
compendium of Internet links related
to the French language and Francophone culture, organized by theme.
Yahoo! France Search the internet
with a search
engine specializing in the Francophone domain.
the museum where my sister-in-law Sylvie Guichard works as an
Texts, images, and articles from the
Bibliothèque Nationale Consult 80,000 documents
10,000,000 pages) extending from the Middle Ages to 1914 on the Gallica
server created by the Bibliothèque nationale de France.
century-by-century articles on the history of the book, French
historiography, French views of the wider world, social and political
topics, French literature (17th-19th centuries still in preparation),
and philosophical/theological ideas make this source a virtual
encyclopedia. -- SPECIAL NOTE: In many cases, reliable texts of complete
literature (such as the works of Balzac) can be easily downloaded from
this site -- see,
on the "Découverte" screen, the link to "Mode texte."
French 422 Nineteenth-Century French
Literature (Fall 2001).
French 431 Twentieth-Century French
Literature (Fall 2000).
Contact:E-mail me email@example.com,
contact me (253-535-7219) during my
office hours (Fall 2014: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday 3:00 p.m.-4:00
or at: Department of Languages
and Literatures, Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, WA 98447.