Gide, André (-Paul-Guillaume)


Gide, André (-Paul-Guillaume)

biographical name

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André Gide, oil painting by P.A. Laurens, 1924; in the National Museum of Modern Art, Paris.—© 1970 A.D.A.G.P.; photograph, Giraudon/Art Resource, New York

(born Nov. 22, 1869, Paris, France—died Feb. 19, 1951, Paris) French writer. The son of a law professor, Gide began writing at an early age. His early prose poem Fruits of the Earth (1897) reflects his increasing awareness of his homosexuality. The novellas The Immoralist (1902) and Strait Is the Gate (1909) showed his mastery of classical construction, and Lafcadio's Adventures displayed his gift for mordant satire. In 1908 he cofounded La Nouvelle Revue Française, the literary review that would unite progressive French writers for 30 years. The autobiographical If It Die… (1924) is among the great works of confessional literature. Corydon (1924), a defense of homosexuality, was violently attacked. The Counterfeiters (1926) is his most complex novel. He become a champion of society's victims and outcasts and was for a time attracted to communism; with the outbreak of World War II he gained a greater appreciation for tradition. He received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1947.

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