(1884–1966). A doctor turned writer and member of the Groupe de l'Abbaye, Duhamel, now a largely forgotten figure, achieved fame before World War II, being elected to the Académie Française in 1935. He is remembered for two cycles of novels: Vie et aventures de Salavin (1920–32), whose hero is a precursor of the antiheroes of Sartre and Camus, and the popular Chronique des Pasquier (1933–45). Writing with warmth and humour, he used the saga of the Pasquier family to attack materialism and defend the rights of the individual against the collective forces of society. He wrote passionately against war and its atrocities (which he had experienced at first hand) in La Vie des martyrs (1917), and against the rise of Hitlerism in Défense des lettres (1937).
From The New Oxford Companion to Literature in French in Oxford Reference.