Edouard Rod

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Édouard Rod (born March 31, 1857 in Nyon , † January 29, 1910 in Grasse ) was a French-speaking author from Switzerland . His most important novel was La course à la mort (German race to death ).

life and work

Édouard Rod studied humanities at the University of Lausanne as well as philology and history in Berlin and was already strongly attracted to Arthur Schopenhauer's philosophy . He then turned to Paris in 1878 , where he was a lively critic for the naturalistic school of Émile Zola in the work À propos de l'Assommoir (1879). This was followed by the satirical study Les Allemands à Paris (Paris 1880) and Rod's first novel Palmyre Veulard (Paris 1881), in which he imitated Zola's method as closely as possible. The following works also belong to the same direction: La chute de Miss Topsy (Brussels 1882); Côte à côte (1882), a bitter satire against the hypocrisy of Protestant Orthodoxy in France; La femme d'Henri Vanneau (Paris 1884); L'autopsie du doctor Z et autres nouvelles (Paris 1884). With the next work, La course à la mort (Paris 1885; German translation by Fabian Stech , Wettlauf zum Tod , Berlin 1999), Rod decidedly left the naturalistic school and found his first great success with this partly autobiographical philosophical novel of pronounced pessimism . In this he turned to psychological analysis, especially the description of hard-to-reach types of people. Tatiana Leïlof (Paris 1886) was a throwback to the old fashion.

In addition to his novels, Rod, who married Valentine Gonin in 1882, was constantly criticized. In 1886 he published Wagner et l'esthétique allemande , in which he defended Wagner , and dedicated a study to the pessimistic poet Leopardi (1888). Le sens de la vie (Lausanne 1889) was a continuation and partial correction in the optimistic sense of the work La course à la mort and was even more successful than this. Rod had a literary relationship with the writer Nancy Marie Vuille (1867-1906)

After Rod had edited the Revue contemporaine in Paris from 1884 to 1887 , he was appointed to succeed Marc Monnier as Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Geneva in 1887 , but gave up this position in 1893 to devote himself entirely to his literary work in Paris. He also traveled to the United States and lectured at Harvard and Cambridge.

Rod showed a new side of his talent in the double novel La vie privée de Michel Teissier (Paris 1893; German, 2nd edition Dresden, 1906) and La seconde vie de Michel Teissier (Paris 1894), in which he describes the relationship between political activity and the Subjected private life and its interactions in France at that time to a subtle moralizing consideration. La vie privée de Monsieur Teissier was also brought to the Paris stage by Rod, but without much success.

Rod's most important piece in the field of criticism is Les idées morales du temps présent (Paris 1897), in which the criticism of Renan's philosophy and historiography is particularly interesting. Rod has also published in the field of criticism: Lamartine (Paris 1883), Dante (1891), Stendhal (Paris 1892), Essai sur Goethe (Paris 1898), Nouvelles études sur le XIX e siècle (Paris 1899), L'Affaire JJ Rousseau (Paris 1906). He also published the following novels:

  • Les trois cœurs , Paris 1890
  • Scènes de la vie cosmopolite , 1890
  • Nouvelles romandes , 1891
  • La sacrifiée , Lausanne 1892
  • Le silence , Paris 1894
  • Les roches blanches , Paris 1895
    • German edition Stuttgart 1897
  • Le dernier refuge , Paris 1896
  • Là-haut , Paris 1897
  • Le ménage du pasteur Naudié , Paris 1898, a study of Protestant France
  • Au milieu du chemin , 1900
    • German edition: Halfway there. Novel. Authorized translation from French by Alwina Vischer. Engelhorn, Stuttgart 1903 (= Engelhorn's General Roman Library, Volume 11)
  • L'eau courante , Paris 1902
  • L'inutile effort , Paris 1903
  • Un vainqueur , Paris 1904
    • German edition: Ein Sieger , Berlin 1905
  • L'indocile , Paris 1905
  • L'incendie , Paris 1906
    • German edition: Die Brandstifter , Mon Village, Vulliens 1979

Rod also dramatized the story of Rousseau in the three-act play Le réformateur (1906), which was performed at the Nouveau Théâtre . In the preface to Moritz Prozor's translation (1889), he first introduced Henrik Ibsen to France. He was a contemporary of Marcel Proust , who admired him for his descriptions of nature. He died suddenly on January 29, 1910 at the age of 53 in Grasse. A literature award bearing Rod's name was donated in 1996.


Web links

Commons : Édouard Rod  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Charles Linsmayer: Nancy Marie Vuille. Retrieved October 11, 2019 .