Biography of Georges Raymond Constantin Rodenbach (1855-1898)

Poet, Narrator and Francophone Belgian playwright, born in Tournai in 1855 and died in Paris in 1898. Member of the Group of artists and intellectuals known as "La Nouvelle Belgique" and led by the poet and critic Émile Verhaeren, was one of the pioneers in Belgium claim the need to create an independent national art.

Driven by their innate literary vocation, in his youth, he/she left his native country to settle down in Paris, where he/she soon filed relations with the parnasianistas poets who, at the time, dominated the French literary scene. Influenced, shortly afterwards, by the powerful refreshing breath of Symbolist current that had displaced the parnasiana aesthetics of the Gallic literary salons, Georges Rodenbach gave to press the volume of verses titled the sea elegante (elegant sea, 1881), he/she soon added in the same stylistic vein, a second book of poems published under the title de l'hiver mondain (the mundane winter1884).

While these two works come to Rodenbach in the center of the last quarter of the 19th century French Symbolist forums, the Belgian poet was stripped of language and topics typical of this current to go to evolve towards a poetic creation more honda and collected, presided over by an intimate tone that gave way to the nostalgic evocation of the natural landscapes of his native land. In the wake of this melancholy and refined workflow of their memories and evocations (which yearned fields and waters of Belgium, as well as the quiet stillness of the ancient Flemish cities), it also emerged in the lyrical works of Georges Rodenbach the need to express the feeling of a nascent religious concern. In this thematic line, should be remembered here the titles of some books of poetry including the jeneusse blanche (white youth, 1886), Le règne du silence (the Kingdom of silence, 1891), Les vies encloses (held lives, 1896) and Le miroir du ciel natal (natal sky mirror, 1896).

Identical process of interiorization and nostalgic evocation is developed throughout his novel Bruges morte (Bruges, dead city, 1892), the work that, as occurs in the poetic production of Rodenbach - as well as some theatrical pieces of Belgian author, which constitute the least relevant part of their literary writings-, resorts to power transformer of memory to give a melancholic picture of the calm that dominates the atmosphere of the Flemish city.