Cendrars, Blaise(blĕz siNdrär`), 1887–1961, Swiss-born French writer whose real name was Frédéric Sauser. He was at various times an art critic, a journalist, and a film director, and he traveled widely, notably in China and Africa. Before World War I, he was associated with Apollinaire, Picasso, and Braque, his poetry conveying a flood of images and emotions that reflected cubist principles. During the war he lost an arm fighting with the Foreign Legion. Later, he wrote fast-paced adventure novels with an exuberant, jazzlike cadence. Cendrars' writing anticipated both surrealism and the nouveau roman, and he had a strong influence on Apollinaire. His works include a collection of poems, Du Monde entier (1919) and the novels L'Or (1925, tr. Sutter's Gold, 1926) and Moravagine (1926, tr. 1928).
(pen name of Frédéric Sauser). Born Sept. 1, 1887, in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland; died Jan. 21, 1961, in Paris. French and Swiss writer.
Cendrars attempted to create a socially oriented lyric epic. Examples are the narrative poems Easter in New York (1912) and The Prose of the Trans-Siberian Express and of Little Jeanne of France (1913); the latter work is based on the author’s visit to Russia. Although Cendrars paid tribute to cubism (Nineteen Elastic Poems, 1919) and other avant-gardist trends, he was also one of the founders, along with G. Apollinaire, of 20th-century poetic realism.
Cendrars created an epic of the modern adventurer in his grotesque novels Sutter’s Gold (1925; Russian translation, 1926), Moravagine (1926, devoted to the Russian Revolution of 1905–07), The Confessions of Dan Yack (1929), Rum (1930), and The Dangerous Life (1938). His later prose works, similar in tone to his poetry and lyrically autobiographical, includes The Man Struck by Thunder (1945), The Amputated Hand (1946), and Liberated (1948). Cendrars also published the collection of essays Today (1931).
WORKSOeuvres complètes [vols. 1–6, 8–9, 13–15].[Paris] 1968–71.
Inédits secrets. [Paris] 1969.
In Russian translation:
Po vsemu miru. Moscow, 1974.
REFERENCESRousselot, J. Blaise Cendrars. Paris .
Parrot, L. Blaise Cendrars. [Paris, 1967.]
Chadourne, J. Blaise Cendrars: poète du Cosmos. [Paris, 1973.]
N. I. BALASHOV