Maurras, Charles

Maurras, Charles

 

Born Apr. 20, 1868, in Martigues, Bouches-du-Rhône; died Nov. 16, 1952, in Tours. French publicist, critic, and poet.

In 1899, Maurras joined the royalist group that had arisen around the biweekly journal Revue de l’Action française; in 1908, the journal became the daily newspaper L’Action française, whose guiding spirit was Maurras. In his articles, Maurras called for discipline and order in society; he asserted the beneficial nature of hereditary monarchy and Catholicism and declared the superiority of the “Latin race” over other peoples. He set forth his political ideas in Enquiry Concerning Monarchy (1900–09) and Kiel and Tangier (1910). Maurras regarded 17th-century classicism as his ethical and aesthetic standard. He wrote a number of books discrediting romanticism and praising the Greco-Roman sources of French culture; among these are The Road to Paradise (1894), Anthinéa (1901), The Lovers of Venice (1902), and The Future of Intelligence (1905).

In his poetry of the 1890’s, Maurras founded the école romane, which opposed symbolism; in essence this was only a variety of the decadent and symbolist movements (the collections For the Sake of Psyche, published separately in 1911, and Inscriptions, 1921). During World War II, Maurras was a rabid chauvinist. During World War II he was the official ideologist of the Pétain government, which collaborated with the fascist German invaders.

WORKS

Oeuvres capitales, vols. 1–4. Paris [1954].
Critique et poésie. Paris, 1968.

REFERENCES

Istoriia frantsuzskoi literatury, vol. 3. Moscow, 1959.
Massis, H. Maurras et notre temps. Paris [1961]

V. E. SHOR

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