Why I Love Barthes

Why I Love Barthes

3.65 (20 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 2 business days
When will my order arrive?


The literary friendship between Alain Robbe-Grillet and RolandBarthes lasted 25 years. Everything attests to their deep andmutual intellectual esteem: their private correspondence, theirpublished texts, their conversations - notably in the famousdialogue which gives its name to this work. Robbe-Grillet freelysaid he had very few true friends but, next to the publisherJ r me Lindon, he always cited the name of RolandBarthes. In 1980, he wrote his own 'I love, I don'tlove', published here for the first time, thinking about hisfriend. In 1985, he predicted: 'It is his work as a writerwhich will remain'. Ten years later, in 1995, he imagined himas an impatient, blithe novelist, merrily rewriting -'euphorically, with inexhaustible happiness' - TheSorrows of Young Werther.

This small collection of conversations and short texts byRobbe-Grillet is like the deferred echo of those that RolandBarthes dedicated to him in his Critical Essays in 1964. It offersfresh insight into the development of Robbe-Grillet's ownwork as well as that of Barthes, and is a unique testimony to oneof the most important literary friendships of our time.
show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 80 pages
  • 129.54 x 193.04 x 12.7mm | 204.12g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • English ed.
  • 0745650783
  • 9780745650784

Table of contents

Foreword by Olivier Corpet vii Why I love Barthes, 1978 1 Roland Barthes's choice, 1981 51 Yet another Roland Barthes, 1995 61 I like, I don't like, 1980 77 Translator's Notes 81
show more

Review quote

"The warmth of friendship between the two is palpable, with some comic teasing: 'Roland speaks quietly,' Robbe-Grillet says. 'I don't speak quietly,' Barthes objects. 'You don't speak quietly,' his friend ripostes, 'but you take the precaution of always having a cigarette between your lips, which, as you know [...] doesn't allow you to shout things out.' The modern literary event-goer wonders melancholically: ou sont les Gitanes d'antan?" Steven Poole, The Guardian "The book's arrival in English should be embraced as a challenge to the many reductions of 'French theory' to a mausoleum of movements, -isms, and masterable ideas. A disapporving critic once called Barthes the Pierre Laval to Robbe-Grillet's Marshal Petain, but this volume shows them to be eels - not quite a pair, not easy to catch, but always electric." Times Literary Supplement "The image of Robbe-Grillet lying in the bath reciting texts by Barthes that he has learned by heart is only one of many unexpected delights of this extremely engaging little book. The dialogue between Barthes and Robbe-Grillet at Cerisy - friendly fencing - teaches much about each of them." Jonathan Culler, Cornell University "Robbe-Grillet describes his friendship with Barthes as a literary love affair without intimacy: 'un certain type de rapport amoureux'. This paradox is traced in its complexity and mystery through the four brief texts of this collection in which the novelist explores the different phases of his relationship with his most eminent critic, laying bare their shared vulnerability and fragility in a way which compels the reader's attention." Christina Howells, University of Oxford
show more

About Alain Robbe-Grillet

Alain Robbe-Grillet (1922-2008) was a French writer and film-maker.
show more

Rating details

20 ratings
3.65 out of 5 stars
5 10% (2)
4 45% (9)
3 45% (9)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X