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 Robert Pierre Desnos

Robert Pierre Desnos

Birth
Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France
Death 8 Jun 1945 (aged 44)
Terezin (Theresienstadt), Okres Litomerice, Ustecky (Usti nad Labem), Czech Republic
Burial Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France
Memorial ID 7342 · View Source
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Poet. A leading member of French Surrealism, he advocated "automatic writing", the spontaneous setting down of thoughts and images as they occur in the mind. He would often put himself into a trance-like state before writing. Andre Breton, the leader of the Surrealists, marveled at Desnos' abilities in his novel "Nadja" (1928). Desnos' poetry was gathered in such books as "Liberty or Love" (1927), "Bodies and Blessings" (1930), "Wakefulness" (1943), "Thwarted" (1944), and "Choice of Poems" (1945). He also wrote Man Ray's avant-garde film "The Starfish" (1928), as well as a novel, "The Wine is Killed" (1943), and a play, "La Place de L'etoile" (1945). Desnos was born in Paris and was a founding member of the Surrealist group in 1924. His first great poetry collections, "A La Mysterieuse" (1926) and "Les Tenebres" (1927), were inspired by his unrequited love for the cabaret singer Yvonne George. He later married the ex-wife of the painter Foujita. Desnos broke with the Surrealists in 1929 after a quarrel with Breton, but the movement's influence remained pervasive in his work. During the Nazi occupation of World War II Desnos contributed to the resistance by writing for and editing underground publications. He was arrested by the Gestapo in February 1944 and imprisoned at Auschwitz, Buchenwald, and finally at the Theresienstadt concentration camp. Desnos was still alive when the Soviets liberated the camp in May 1945, but died there of typhus before he could return home.

Bio by: Bobb Edwards


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 28 Nov 1999
  • Find A Grave Memorial 7342
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Robert Pierre Desnos (4 Jul 1900–8 Jun 1945), Find A Grave Memorial no. 7342, citing Cimetière de Montparnasse, Paris, City of Paris, Île-de-France, France ; Maintained by Find A Grave .