Roger Vailland


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(1907–65). French novelist and essayist. His main works of fiction, Drôle de jeu (1945), Les Mauvais Coups (1948), Bon pied, bon œil (1950), Beau Masque (1954), 325,000 francs (1955), La Loi (1957, Prix Goncourt), La Fête (1960), La Truite (1960), demonstrate a tension between the individual will and la chasse au bonheur on the one hand, and a sense of Marxist-inspired social commitment on the other. Egalitarianism notwithstanding, quality of spirit alone allows his heroes survival and ultimate authorial approval. Vailland, an ex-Surrealist, a résistant, and a Communist until the invasion of Hungary, also wrote plays and probing essays—Laclos par lui-même (1953), Éloge du cardinal de Bernis (1956), Le Regard froid (1963).

From The New Oxford Companion to Literature in French in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Literature.

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