Biography of Philippe Soupault (1897-1990)

Poet and French Narrator, born at Chaville (Paris) in 1897. His figure is linked to early 20th-century avant-garde movements.

He was one of the founders of the journal literature in 1919. He adhered to the Dada movement, founded by Tristán Tzara in a cabaret in Zurich in 1916. This time corresponds to his work Rose des vents (rose) of 1920. In that same year he composed in collaboration with André Breton Les champs magnetiques (magnetic fields), which was the first experiment of automatic writing. In 1921 he was among the organizers of the surrealist movement, founded in 1924 by André Bretón, which distanced himself in 1927 due to the accession of Breton to the Communist Party. However, his work has had away already from tendencies of the movement as evidenced by collections Westwego (1922), Wang-Wang (1924) and Georgia (1926).

Other works of interest in terms of his poetic production are: Il and an ocean (there is an ocean, 1936), L´arme secrète (secret weapon, 1946), Chansons du jour et de nuit (songs of the day and night, 1949) and Sans phrases (without quotes, 1953). It should be noted the popular rhythms and involvement in the events of history.

Its production in prose was also linked to the trends of the surrealist movement. Between 1923 and 1928, he published a series of works where evokes characters overwhelmed by sleep, addiction and hunger for adventure. Highlights: Le bon Apôtre (the good Apostle, 1923), to the dérivé (adrift, 1924), in joué (point!, 1925), Le negre (the black, 1927) and Les Dernières nuits de Paris (the last nights of Paris, 1928).

He wrote for the cinema and theatre. It also stood out for his role as literary and art critic with the publication of numerous essays including Profils perdus (lost profiles, 1963) and l´amitie (friendship, 1965).

Soupault wrote an autobiographical book published in 1945 entitled Le temps des assassins. Histoire du détenu No. 1934 (the time of the assassins. History of the detainee number 1934), where refers to the arrest and imprisonment suffered in Tunisia in 1943.