- Bataille, Georges
born Sept. 10, 1897, Billom, Francedied July 9, 1962, ParisFrench librarian and writer.He trained as an archivist and worked at the Bibliothèque Nationale and at the Orléans library. He wrote a number of novels under pseudonyms before publishing Le Coupable (1944; Guilty) under his own name. His novels, essays, and poetry show a fascination with eroticism, mysticism, violence, and an ideal of excess and waste. In 1946 he founded the influential literary review Critique, which he edited until his death.
* * *▪ French authorborn Sept. 10, 1897, Billom, Francedied July 9, 1962, ParisFrench librarian and writer whose essays, novels, and poetry expressed his fascination with eroticism, mysticism, and the irrational. He viewed excess as a way to gain personal “sovereignty.”After training as an archivist at the school of paleography known as the École des Chartes (School of Charters) in Paris, he worked as a librarian and medieval specialist at the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris until 1942. In 1951 he became keeper of the Orléans library. He also edited scholarly journals and in 1946 founded an influential literary review, Critique, which he edited until his death.His first novel, on sexual excess, was published under a pseudonym, Lord Auch; it appeared in 1928 as Histoire de l'oeil (The Story of the Eye). As Pierre Angélique, another pseudonym, he wrote Madame Edwarda (1937). Le Coupable (1944; Guilty) was the first major literary work published under his own name. La Littérature et le mal (1957; Literature and Evil) and L'Érotisme (1957; Eroticism) followed. He also wrote Lascaux; ou, la naissance de l'art (1955; Lascaux; or, The Birth of Art) and Manet (1955). A novel, Ma Mère (My Mother), was published in 1966.The complete works (Oeuvres complètes) of Bataille, published between 1970 and 1988, occupy 12 volumes.
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