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(pen name of Alfons de Ridder). Born May 7, 1882, in Antwerp; died there May 31, 1960. Belgian poet and novelist who wrote in Flemish.
Elsschot trained for a career in business. He eventually became a poet; his poetry was published in the collection Early Poems (1934). In 1913 he wrote the novel Villa des Roses, an attack on the mores of the petite bourgeoisie. His novella Deliverance (1921) describes country life, and the novel Disillusionment (1921) deals with the tragic fate of the little man in bourgeois society. Elsschot was the author of the satirical novel Snares (1924) and of several satirical novellas. His psychological prose works constitute a significant landmark in the development of critical realism in 20th-century Belgian literature.
WORKSVerzameld werk. Amsterdam, 1957.
In Russian translation:
Villa roz; Silki; Syr; Tanker; Bluzhdaiushchii ogonek. Foreword by I. Shkunaeva. Moscow, 1972.
REFERENCESSmits, F. W. Elsschot. Brussels, 1952.
Stuiveling, G. W. Elsschot. Brussels, 1960.
Carmiggelt, S. Notities over Willem Elsschot. Amsterdam, 1976.
V. V. DANCHEV