Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50

Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50

An incandescent group portrait of the midcentury artists and thinkers whose lives, loves, collaborations, and passions were forged against the wartime destruction and postwar rebirth of Paris In this fascinating tour of a celebrated city during one of its most trying, significant, and ultimately triumphant eras, Agnes Poirier unspools the stories of the poets, writers, pain An incandescent group portrait of the midcentury artists and thinkers whose lives, loves, collaborations, and passion...

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Title:Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50
Author:Agnès Poirier
Rating:
Genres:Nonfiction
ISBN:Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50
ISBN
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:320 pages pages

Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50 Reviews

  • Supriyo Chaudhuri
    Jul 29, 2018
    A beautifully written part collective biography part chronicle of times of Left Bank intellectuals and Artists of Paris in the years during and after the war. It is a bold attempt to understand and explain the creative ferment that Paris stood for in those grim years of rationing and r...
  • Nancy
    Nov 02, 2017
    There's no shortage of literature written about the famous Lost Generation of writers who populated Paris in the 1920's, and I have read my share. I was totally unfamiliar with the dynamic society of writers who made Paris their home between 1940 and 1950. This book filled that void in...
  • Tosh
    Jun 03, 2018
    I can almost resist everything, except, any books about the Left Bank during the 1940s to the late 1950s. Generally, readers/culture addicts are seduced by images of Paris and its culture throughout the years. In a way, it's the conceptual 'Disneyland' for those who don't live there, y...
  • M
    Oct 02, 2018
    Not being particularly into existentialist writers I wasn?t sure I would like this book. But it?s more a cultural history of Paris - including the thoughts, emotions, and even gooey gossip of the writers, artists, cinematographers, politicians, etc. who spent their formative years ...
  • Denis
    Apr 12, 2018
    This is one of the most enjoyable history books I?ve read in a long time. As fast-moving, eventful, and thrilling as an epic novel, it is also, first and foremost, a vibrant, skillful, literate and thoroughly researched study of the mythical left bank of Paris, at the time when it be...
  • Niklas Pivic
    Mar 05, 2018
    This book could be seen as a complement to Sarah Bakewell's seminal At the Existentialist Caf: Freedom, Being, and Apricot Cocktails, where Poirir has collected a lot of background and information on what some truly exciting persons thought of, did, and how they performed both duri...
  • Edward Sullivan
    Jul 06, 2018
    An interesting, engaging chronicle of a decade of Paris cultural, intellectual, and political life. ...
  • Alyson
    May 05, 2018
    So much information! So gossipy! I can not imagine the research that went into truthfully revealing the personal lives of the cultural players in Paris during the time period set out in Paris during and after the Second World War. Politics and art merged as they do when extremes exist,...
  • Alan
    May 01, 2018
    A Not-So-Lost Generation There is such a gust of positive energy in this terrific overview of the artists and writers who either lived in or visited Paris during the years 1939 to 1949. Agns Poirier makes it all come alive with a thoroughly researched history of these figures of w...
  • Paul Myers
    May 17, 2018
    A strong story-telling narrative of the fascinating literary personalities of the postwar world on the Left Bank in the 1949s. It puts the lives of Albert Camus, Jean Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, and Arthur Koestler into one powerful interwoven story. One understands the relationsh...
  • Mary
    Jun 21, 2018
    I appreciated her attention to Richard Wright and James Baldwin, who went to France to escape racism and participate in Paris?s rich cultural and intellectual life. A fascinating, gossipy cultural history of Paris during and after World War II. There?s lots of information about Bea...
  • Kristine
    Mar 04, 2018
    Left Bank by Agnes Poirier is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in late February. A multifaceted, multi-disciplinary book on different generations living in Paris between 1940 and 1950 within a 'Third Way philosophy' (not Capitalist, yet not quite Communist). They uncover and displ...
  • Riet
    Jun 02, 2018
    Volgens de titel gaat het boek vooral over de kunstenaars in Parijs van 1940 tot 1950, maar het is veel meer. Er zijn heel veel schrijvers, zowel Franse als Engelse en Amerikaanse en ook heel veel andere kunstenaars, schilders, beeldhouwers etc., maar het gaat toch vooral ook over Pari...
  • Yvonne
    Jun 12, 2018
    This book draws no conclusions, but is a succession of juicy tidbits about writers? personal lives. Too much vital information is left out, too many plot holes, too much tension with no logical release. The writing style is also odd?convoluted sentences, calling historical figures ...
  • Cordula
    Oct 24, 2018
    Poirier chronicles the life of the Left Bank and its residents with incredible attention to detail. The book reads like a biography of this particular place and time, and while at its core stand Sartre, de Beauvoir and Camus, the cast of characters is rounded out with many of their fri...
  • Pirate
    Aug 19, 2018
    If it was permitted I would give this six stars. Entertaining, engrossing and educational excuse the alliteration!! I have always enjoyed a world press review on BBC News Channel/World when Agnes Poirier has been on it as there is a twinkle in her eye which others lack -- mischievous p...
  • Richard
    Aug 21, 2018
    I thought this novel was just ' okay. ' Stories about some of the major players in Paris during the 1940's and 50's Left Bank era including Jean Paul Satre, Albert Camus, Simone de Beauvoir, et al and how they survived WWII and the era after that. ...
  • Christian Peltenburg-brechneff
    Jun 22, 2018
    Loved the book. Slightly gossipy but knowing a lot about most characters it is a wonderful journey through a world of the past. Not always written as poetic as the writers were but it flows along...anyone who is interested in that time in Paris should pick it up ...
  • Sunil
    May 16, 2018
    A rollicking account of a small, well-documented section of Paris, but re-tread here in one continuous, fizzy, gossipy story. ...
  • William Fisher
    Jun 23, 2018
    A magnificent read ...
  • Lisa Mcbroom
    Apr 25, 2018
    This book started out promising with the quote about a group of existentialists sitting at a cafe with the quote their world was knowledge and they had little to do with politics. They were above politics because they were philosophers. I thought hmmmm in a previous life I must have be...
  • Stephen Goldenberg
    Nov 19, 2018
    Whenever I play that game of choosing a historical period and a place where and when I would most have liked to live then post-war left bank Paris is often my choice. Sitting around in cafes discussing life, politics and literature with the likes of Sartre, de Beauvoir and Camus or jus...
  • Courtney (A Little Bookish Life)
    Mar 28, 2018
    This book read so well, I was able to imagine so much of the life and times of the people in Paris during the 1940s. I personally admit that I enjoyed the first half of this book so much more than the second. It tapered off for me and I became more disinterested, but I will absolutely ...
  • Ian Brydon
    Apr 20, 2018
    Put most simply, this is a marvellous book: informative, enlightening, well researched and also highly entertaining. (Less importantly, but worthy of mention, it also has the most delightful cover, featuring lovely line drawings of several of the leading characters in the intellectual ...
  • Andrea Engle
    Nov 14, 2018
    Stimulating study of Paris and its intellectuals from the Nazi Occupation to Post-War Paris, revitalized by the Marshall Plan ... focusing on the Existentualists, primarily Jean Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, looking at Camus, Koestler, and Richard Wright in passing, this is essen...
  • Connie Mcnally
    Jul 30, 2018
    This book did have some fascinating details I'd not heard before about the Resistance years (the plan to save the Louvre collection) as well as details of various authors/artists lives/liaisons during those years. A bit more detail about romantic lives than I was interested in, but it ...
  • Tena
    Jan 14, 2018
    I won an Advance Readers Copy in a GOODREADS giveaway sponsored by Henry Holt. ...
  • Karen Adkins
    May 20, 2018
    The existentialists were exciting for lots of reasons; their focus on philosophy that responded to the world in all its messiness means that they endlessly attempted to argue about how we ought to live in important ways--our politics, our family relations, our ethics. They also lived t...
  • Paul "Axl" Askew
    Jun 29, 2018
    What a phenomenal book! The style it is written in is such a joy to read, and every time it seems like it may be slipping into speculation, there is a footnote to remind you just how well researched this project has obviously been. I absolutely love this. ...
  • Dan O'Meara
    May 16, 2018
    I was hooked by this account of a world in political and intellectual turmoil. Simone de Beauvoir's Les Mandarins is one of my favourite novels, and Agns Poirier's account of the world that de Beauvoir rendered in fiction is the perfect counterpart to that brilliant novel. ...