Saint Louis University

Renowned French author Pascal Quignard will give a lecture on music titled "Les Leçons de solfège et de piano" at 3:30 p.m. Friday, March 22, in Père Marquette Gallery in DuBourg Hall. The lecture will be presented as part of the Modern and Classical Languages Colloquium and will be delivered in French. A reception will follow.

For more Information, contact Jean-Louis Pautrot, Ph.D., at pautropj@slu.edu.

About the author

Pascal Quignard is the most original and prolific of contemporary French writers. He has come to be viewed as one of the great writers of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, with a literary oeuvre comparable in magnitude to that of Faulkner in North America or Borges in South America. With 60 books published since 1969, Quignard is attracting more and more scholarly and public interest in Europe and worldwide. His writings cross generic boundaries, as they mix meditation, intellectual speculation, autobiography and various narrative genres. Steeped in the authors of antiquity and in 17th-century religious moralism, his writings also echo contemporary epistemological changes in their dialogue with anthropology, philology, philosophy, psychoanalysis, history and contemporary science. They offer a continuing reflection on language, art and sexuality, engaging music and pictorial arts in an attempt to approach the mystery of human origins, discourse and reality. Quignard has been deemed a "mystic without religion." Quignard often writes and reflects on ancient Greek and Latin authors, as well as on Freud, Lévi-Strauss, Heidegger, Spinoza, Bataille, Montaigne, Lao-Tseu, the Bible and many others.

Born in Normandy, France, in 1948, Quignard grew up in Le Havre, a port city that had been almost totally destroyed by British bombings in September 1944. Visions of chaos and subsequent renaissance shaped his worldview and his art. As a philosophy student in Nanterre in 1966-68, his professors were Paul Ricoeur, Emmanuel Levinas, Jean-François Lyotard, Henri Lefebvre and psychoanalyst Didier Anzieu. Later, he became friends with Pierre Klossowski and Paul Celan. Quignard has written a dozen novels, as well as numerous essays and books that do not fit into one specific genre but encompass many. He has invented new literary forms, such as the "petit traité." A consummate musician, an advocate of early baroque music and the author of splendid texts on music (such as All the Mornings in the World, which was turned into a film that garnered a 1992 Golden Globe Award), he is also a remarkable art critic, having authored studies on George de la Tour, Picasso, Hans Bellmer, Pierre Skira, Marie Morel, etc. and the art of antiquity. He has conducted many partnerships with artists and musicians, resulting in a requiem, an opera, ballets and more.

English Bibliography in chronological order of writing:

  • On Wooden Tablets: Apronenia Avitia. Novel. Burning Deck, 2001.
  • The Salon in Wurtemberg. Novel. Grove Press, 1991.
  • George de la Tour. Flohic, 1991.
  • Albucius. Lapis, 1992.
  • All the World's Mornings. Novel. Graywolf Press, 1993.
  • Sex and Terror. Seagull, 2012.
  • The Roving Shadows. Seagull, 2012.
  • The Silent Crossing. Seagull, 2013.