|French literary history|
Michel Tournier (born 19 December 1924) is a French writer.
His works are highly considered and have won important awards such as the Grand Prix du roman de l'Académie française in 1967 for Friday, or, The Other Island and the Prix Goncourt for The Erl-King in 1970. His works dwell on the fantastic, his inspirations including traditional German culture, Catholicism, and the philosophies of Gaston Bachelard. He currently lives in Choisel and is a member of the Académie Goncourt. His autobiography has been translated and published as The Wind Spirit (Beacon Press, 1988).
Born in Paris from parents who met at the Sorbonne while studying German, he spent his youth in Saint-Germain-en-Laye. He learned German early, staying each summer in Germany. His education was deeply marked by the German culture, music and Catholicism. Later he discovered the thought of Gaston Bachelard.
He studied philosophy at the Sorbonne and at the university of Tübingen and attended Maurice de Gandillac's course. He wished to teach philosophy at high-school but, like his father, failed to obtain the French agrégation.
From 1958 to 1968, he was the chief editor of Plon.
In 1967 he published his first book, Vendredi ou les Limbes du Pacifique, retelling Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, adding to the story a philosophical depth. He was awarded the Grand Prix du roman de l'Académie française for it.
- Vendredi ou les Limbes du Pacifique (Friday) (1967) - Grand Prix du roman de l'Académie française
- Le Roi des aulnes (1970) (The Erl-King translated 1972 by Barbara Bray, aka The Ogre)
- Le Roi des aulnes was made into a 1996 movie Der Unhold (The Ogre) directed by Volker Schlöndorff
- It has also been adapted for the stage by Tom Perrin. This originated as a post-graduate research project at the Mountview Academy of Dramatic Arts in 2002. The show The Erl King was then taken to the 2003 Edinburgh Festival..
- Les Météores (Gemini, 1975)
- Le Vent Paraclet (The Wind Spirit, 1977)
- Vendredi ou la Vie sauvage (Friday and Robinson, 1977)
- Le Coq de bruyère (The Fetishist and Other Stories, 1978)
- Gaspard, Melchior et Balthazar (The Four Wise Men, 1980)
- Le Vol du vampire (1981)
- Gilles et Jeanne (Gilles and Jeanne, 1983)
- La Goutte d'or (The Golden Droplet, 1986)
- Petites Proses (1986)
- Le Medianoche amoureux (The Midnight Love Feast, 1989)
- La Couleuvrine (1994)
- Le Miroir des idées (The Mirror of Ideas, 1994)
- Eléazar ou la Source et le Buisson (Eleazar, Exodus to the West, 1996)
- Journal extime (2002)
- Jean-Louis de Rambures, "Comment travaillent les écrivains", Paris 1978 (interview with M. Tournier) (French)
- Christopher Anderson. Michel Tournier's Children: Myth, Intertext, Initiation. Peter Lang. 1998. 145pp.
- Walter Redfern: Le Coq De Bruyere. Michel Tournier. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press. 1996. 138pp.
- William Cloonan. Michel Tournier. Twayne. 1985. 110pp.
- Colin Davis. Michel Tournier: Philosophy and Fiction. Clarendon Press. 1988. 222pp.
- Rachel Edwards. Myth and the Fiction of Michel Tournier and Patrick Grainville. Edwin Mellen Press. 1999. 310pp.
- David Gascoigne. Michel Tournier. Berg. 1996. 234pp.
- Mairi Maclean. Michel Tournier: Exploring Human Relations. Bristol Academic. 2003. 308pp.
- Susan Petit. Michel Tournier's Metaphysical Fictions. John Benjamins Publishing Company. 1991. 224pp.
- Pary Pezechkian-Weinberg. Michel Tournier: marginalité et création. Peter Lang. 1997. 170pp. Language: French.
- David Platten. Michel Tournier and the Metaphor of Fiction. Liverpool University Press. 1999. 250pp.
- Martin Roberts. Michel Tournier: Bricolage and Cultural Mythology. Anma Libri. 1994. 192pp.
- Jane Kathryn Stribling. Plenitude Restored, Or, Trompe L'oeil: The Problematic of Fragmentation and Integration in the Prose Works of Pierre Jean Jouve and Michel Tournier. Peter Lang. 1998. 339pp.
- Michel Tournier. The Wind Spirit: An Autobiography. Translated by Arthur Goldhammer. Beacon Press. 1988. 259pp.
- Vladimir Tumanov. “John and Abel in Michel Tournier’s Le Roi des Aulnes.” Romanic Review 90 (3) 1999: 417-434.
- Michael Worton (editor). Michel Tournier. Longman. 1995. 220pp.
- Zhaoding Yang. Michel Tournier: La Conquête de la Grande Santé. Peter Lang. 2001. 175pp. Language: French.