May 13, 1990 |
The eminent French writer Marguerite Duras has had, since her earliest publications, fierce supporters and detractors. Admirers of her work will find in this collection of essays amplification and background thought to her fiction, but others are likely to consider the musings just another set of Gallic pronouncements.
April 30, 1989 |
"Emily L.," written by the acclaimed French writer Marguerite Duras and translated by Barbara Bray, is a short and odd experimental novel--a story within a story--about a French writer and her longtime lover who sit in a cafe in a port town off the Seine and imagine the life history of an aging English couple they've never met, who are sitting across the room from them getting unhappily drunk. By the end of the novel it seems clear that the story the French writer and her lover imagine is, in some way, the story of their own life together.
November 11, 2008 |
An exiled Afghan writer won France's top literary prize Monday for his novel about the misery of a woman caring for a husband left brain-damaged by a war wound. Atiq Rahimi was awarded the Goncourt prize for "Syngue Sabour," Persian for "Stone of Patience," a title derived from a folk tale about a black stone that absorbs the distress of anyone who confides in it. The 105-year-old Prix Goncourt guarantees literary acclaim and high sales for the winning author. Past recipients include Marcel Proust, Simone de Beauvoir and Marguerite Duras.
April 7, 1986 |
Marguerite Duras won the $50,000 Ritz Paris Hemingway Award today for "L'Amant," her intense, lyric novel about the love affair she had with a wealthy Chinese when she was 15 years old in French Indochina. Duras, 72, said the Hemingway prize meant more to her than the Prix Goncourt, France's top literary award that she won two years ago, because of its American connections and her "secret passion" for Hemingway.
June 14, 1992 |
SUMMER RAIN by Marguerite Duras, translated from the French by Barbara Bray (Scribner's: $18; 128 pp.) For a reviewer who, inexplicably, hadn't read anything by Marguerite Duras before, the veteran French novelist and filmmaker projected an image of austerity, if not sternness. What a surprise, then, to find this short novel, based on her 1984 movie "Les Enfants," to be a delicate, wistful, tender work, verging on sentimentality.
February 22, 2009 |
The Sailor From Gibraltar A Novel Marguerite Duras, translated from the French by Barbara Bray Open Letter: 276 pp., $12.95 paper For many readers, the name Marguerite Duras is synonymous with smoky cafes and doomed love affairs. Sultry heat drives her characters to sex. This novel, first published in 1952 and made into a movie in 1967, is no exception. There's a little more raw daylight, since the narrator, in his utter boredom with work (copying birth and death certificates at the French Colonial Ministry)