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Definition: Cendrars, Blaise from The Columbia Encyclopedia

(blĕz siNdrär'), 1887–1961, Swiss-born French writer whose real name was Frédéric Sauser. He was at various times an art critic, a journalist, and a film director, and he traveled widely, notably in China and Africa. Before World War I, he was associated with Apollinaire, Picasso, and Braque, his poetry conveying a flood of images and emotions that reflected cubist principles. During the war he lost an arm fighting with the Foreign Legion. Later, he wrote fast-paced adventure novels with an exuberant, jazzlike cadence. Cendrars' writing anticipated both surrealism and the nouveau roman, and he had a strong influence on Apollinaire. His works include a collection of poems, Du Monde entier (1919) and the novels L'Or (1925, tr. Sutter's Gold, 1926) and Moravagine (1926, tr. 1928).


Summary Article: Cendrars, Blaise
from The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather Guide

French writer. An associate of the avant-garde poet Apollinaire, he wrote poetry with Futurist tendencies (for example, Prose du Transsibérien et de la petite Jehanne de France/Prose of the Transsiberian and of Little Jehanne of France 1913) and novels conveying the excitements of an active and varied life.

His volumes of poetry include Les Pâques à New York/Easter in New York (1912), Dix-neuf poèmes élastiques/Nineteen Elastic Poems (1919), and Feuilles de route/Travel Warrants (1924). His novels include L'Or/Sutter's Gold (1925) and Emmène-moi au bout du monde/Take Me to the End of the World (1955).

Cendrars was born in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. He travelled in many parts of the world both before and after World War I (during which he served in the Foreign Legion). In addition to his poetry and novels, he also produced reportages such as Panorama de la pègre/A View of the Underworld (1935) and Chez l'armée anglaise/In the English Army (1940).

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