Andre Stil
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Andre Stil
André Stil
Born(1921-04-01)1 April 1921
Hergnies, France
Died3 September 2004(2004-09-03) (aged 83)
Camélas, France
OccupationAuthor
NationalityFrench
Period1949-1996
GenreFiction
Literary movementSocialist realism

André Stil (1 April 1921 - 3 September 2004) was a French novelist, short story writer, occasional poet, and political activist. A lifelong militant, he became a member of the French Communist Party in 1940, and remained loyal to the party.

Life

Born in Hergnies, Nord, a small town in the coal-mining region of northern France, Stil was educated at the University of Lille, earning a degree in philosophy. He taught at the University from 1941 to 1944. Having joined the Communist Party in 1940, he then held a series of increasingly senior editorial positions with communist newspapers. He was secretary-general of Liberté until 1949, then editor-in-chief of Ce Soir. He served as editor of the party's main newspaper, L'Humanité, until 1956, continuing to contribute thereafter, and from 1950 to 1970 he was a member of the French Communist Party's central committee.

Beginning in 1949, he published some fifty volumes, comprising mainly socialist realist novels, but also short stories and a volume of verse. Supported by Louis Aragon, he won the Stalin Prize for his trilogy The First Clash (1951-1953). He won the Grand Prix du Roman Populaire, was awarded the Legion d'Honneur, and in 1977 was elected one of the ten members of the Academie Goncourt.[1]

In 1956 he published a report from the Hungarian Revolution, describing an apparent mass murder of Hungarian communists.[2] However Peter Fryer, a British journalist and Marxist who, unlike Stil was present during the Revolution and Soviet crack-down, questioned Stil's account arguing that 'Stil [was] obviously performing the disagreeable task of a propagandist making the most of a small number of atrocities.'[2] Indeed, Fryer refuted Stil's account pointing out that those killed were in fact members of the hated AVH secret police.[2]

Works

His first novel, The Word `Coalminer', Comrade (1949) launched his enduring themes of working class life and militant communist politics. This was followed by a short story collection, The Seine has Taken to the Sea (1950) and his prize-winning trilogy The First Clash (1951-1953). This tells the story of the resistance of dock workers to the arrival of an American arms ship and contains detailed accounts of domestic working-class life. Anti-Americanism and the French-Algerian problem were important themes in his work through the 1950s.[3] He returned to his coal-mining background repeatedly in his fiction; one of his last novels was Coal Dust on the Snow (1996). In addition to his prolific fiction, he wrote a critical work, Towards Socialist Realism, and an autobiography, A Life Spent Writing. He also wrote scripts for television.[1]

List of works

  • Au mot amour
  • Beau comme un homme
  • Bélesta
  • Conte du premier oeuf
  • De eerste stoot 3 dedlen
  • Dieu est un enfant
  • Fleurs par erreur
  • Gazelle
  • La neige fumée
  • La question du bonneur est posée 1- le blé égyptien
  • L'ami dans le miroir
  • Le Médecin de charme
  • L'autre monde, etc.
  • L'Homme de coeur
  • L'homme fleur
  • Le foudroyage
  • Le médecin de charme
  • Le mot mineur camarades ...
  • Le Mouvement de la terre
  • Le roman de Constance
  • Le premier choc - au château d'eau
  • Les oiseaux migrateurs
  • Les Quartiers d'été
  • Malaguanyat
  • Maxime et Anne
  • Nous nous aimerons demain
  • Paris avec nous le premier choc
  • Pêche à la plume
  • Pierwski starcie 2 volume
  • Pignon sur ciel
  • Quand Robespierre et Danton inventaient la France
  • Qui ?
  • Romansonge
  • Soixante-quatre coquelicots
  • Une histoire pour chaque matin
  • Une vie à écrire

References

  1. ^ a b James Kirkup, "André Stil: Obituary" The Independent September 9, 2004, recovered May 11, 2009
  2. ^ a b c "Peter Fryer: Hungarian Tragedy (8. Revolution and counter-revolution)". www.marxists.org. Retrieved .
  3. ^ John Ernest Flower, Literature and the Left in France Routledge, 1985, 152-153

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