Poet, visionary, short-story writer and autobiographer, Gerard de Nerval (1808-1855) explored the uncertain borderlines between dream and reality, irony and madness, autobiography and fiction with his groundbreaking writings.
This comprehensive selection of his works includes 'Aurelia', the memoir of his madness; the haunting novella of love and memory 'Sylvie' (considered to be a masterpiece by Proust); the hermetic sonnets of 'The Chimeras'; as well as Nerval's experimental fictions and selections from his correspondence, which demonstrate his lucid awareness of how nineteenth-century psychiatry consigned his fertile imagination to the status of mental illness.
Together these pieces confirm Nerval's place as a pioneering modernist, a precursor of the French Symbolists and a vital model for such writers as Marcel Proust, Andre Breton, Antonin Artaud and Michel Leiris.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 448 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- Publication Date: 28/01/1999
- Category: Literary essays
- ISBN: 9780140446012