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Born July 11, 1876, in Quimper, in the department of Finistere; died Mar. 5, 1944, in a concentration camp at Drancy. French author.
Jacob first appeared in print in 1903. Closely associated with G. Apollinaire, P. Picasso, and G. Braque, he came forward in the decade before World War I as one of the advocates of “cubist poetry” and of cubism in painting. Jacob’s works influenced the surrealists: his book Poetic Art (1922) proclaimed nonrationalism and the rejection of plot, and his poems displayed religious motifs and fantastically vague forms, or “myths”; the poems are built on alliterations and puns, at times crossing over into meaninglessness (including “Central Laboratory,” 1921, and “Penitents in Pink Tights,” 1925). Jacob’s novels (Filibuth, or The Golden Watch, 1922, and Bouchaballe’s Land, 1923), as well as his works that are unique for their combination of prose and verse (St. Matorel, 1909, and The Defense ofTartuffe, 1919), are marked by the interplay of fantasy and grotesquely depicted bourgeois reality. Jacob, a Jew, died in the concentration camp where he was imprisoned by German fascists (Letters to Salacrou, published in 1957).
WORKSDerniers poèmes en vers et en prose. Paris .
In Russian translation:
[Poetry], in la pishu tvoe imia, Svoboda. Moscow, 1968.
REFERENCESIstoriiafrantsuzskoiliteratury, vol. 3. Moscow, 1959.
Europe, 1958, April-May, nos. 348–49. (The issue is devoted to M. Jacob.)
O. I. IL’INSKAIA