Louis Couperus

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Louis Couperus
Louis Marie-Anne Couperus
BirthplaceThe Hague, Netherlands

Couperus, Louis


Born June 10, 1863, in The Hague; died July 16, 1923, in De Steeg. Dutch writer.

The son of a highly placed official in the Dutch administration in Indonesia, Couperus published a collection of verses entitled Orchids in 1887. His novel Eline Vere (1889) showed the decay of high society. The theme of the inevitability of fate is central to his novels Fate (1890) and Old People and the Things That Pass (1906). In the novel The Hidden Force (1900), Couperus contrasted the Dutch colonizers and the people of Java, slumbering but full of latent power.

Couperus wrote the utopian novels Majesty (1893, Russian translation, 1906) and Peace to All the World (1895, Russian translation, 1907). World War I dealt a blow to his Utopian ideas; he turned to antiquity and sought in the past the sources of modern barbarism and antihumanism—for example, in the novels Comedians (1917) and Xerxes (1919). Couperus was a representative of naturalism in Dutch literature.


Proza [vols. 1–3] Amsterdam, 1923–25.
Verzamelde werken, vols. 1–12. Amsterdam-Antwerp, 1952–57.
De boeken der kleine zielen, vols. 1–4. The Hague [1952].
In Russian translation:
“Fatum.” Novyi zhurnal literatury, iskusstva i nauki, February-April, 1905.


Tricht, H. W. van. Louis Couperus. The Hague, 1960.
Ham, J. van, and J. C. Verkerk. Facetten en figuren. The Hague-Rotterdam [1961].
Bogaerts, T. De antieke wereld van Louis Couperus. Amsterdam, 1969.


References in periodicals archive ?
Screenplay, Ger Thijs, Angelo Pasquini, based on the novel "On the Road to Joy" by Louis Couperus.
Domesticating the Empire offers rich analyses of such diverse and extraordinarily specific colonial phenomena as the 1889 Universal Exposition in Paris and resultant formation of the Music Social; the criteria for paternity in the 1912 legalization of paternity suits in France and the criteria for French citizenship in West Africa from 1912 to 1933; miscegenation in the 1900 Dutch novel by Louis Couperus, Hidden Force, or exotic representations of Cambodian women in the 1925 French novel by George Groslier, La route du plus fort; and Javanese domestic servants and the 1920 founding of the Colonial School for Girls and Women in The Hague.
Louis Leipoldt (South African writer in Afrikaans), Willem Walraven, Louis Couperus, Annie Salomons, Herman Salomonson, Beb Vuyk, E.