Bruges-La-Morte by Georges Rodenbach is one of those minor pieces of world literature that can have a major effect on the reader. It is not a sublime work of art, . 3 / 1 / Georges Rodenbach, Bruges-la-Morte. James Elkins. This is the book most often taken as the starting point for novels illustrated with photographs. BRUGES-LA-MORTE t ‘Ronance. BY. GEORGES RODENBACH. Translated from the rench, with a Critical. Introduction, by. THOMAS DUNCAN. WITH THREE.
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Its elements — love, death, ritual, doubles, and all the aspects of the city of Bruges that the protagonist feels reflect the condition of his soul you can practically hear the ringing, ringing, ringing of the bells — are very well handled. There is clearly a person at the lower right of the photo no. Hugues qui n’est pas capable de se maitriser la tue.
Bruges-la-Morte, though, edges away from allegory, or maintains a pious silence as to whether it is, or is not, allegorical. Tragedy can already be anticipated in the opening paragraph, but plotline is totally superfluous in this case.
But the faces of the dead, which are preserved in our memory for a while, gradually deteriorate there, fading like a pastel drawing that has not been kept under glass, allowing the chalk to disperse. I keep thinking about music so much because so much music resides in the words, even in the very able translation. More than once he had felt this seduction. An admirer has put up a modest bronze plaque in Bruges, and that’s it.
His mind mlrte tricks on him? In my mind I thought I was paying tribute to her, and yet in reality I was doing her an injustice, reducing her to a single image, one that no one, not even she, could have lived up to. Three possibilities present themselves. It is fitting that Alan Hollinghurst introduces this novel, for he has used elements from it in his own fiction.
Three different editions of Georges Rodenbach’s Bruges-la-Morte | ThisIsSuperSerious
Rodenbach interspersed his text with dozens of black-and-white photographs of Bruges. Solo qui la vita gli era sopportabile. The quays of Bruges. Still, the streets of Bruges have a slow-burning mystery here, and a well-wrought background of fanatical Catholic disapproval that builds to fever in the culminating Holy Blood procession. Rodenbach worked as a lawyer and journalist.
This classic of Belgian literature epitomises the decadent final years of the nineteenth century, a north of the border companion piece to the poetry of Baudelaire and Verlaine, rich in dreaminess and mysterious in intent, a work of high seriousness a world away from the nut and bolts environment we inhabit today.
Brilliant article — and brilliant project overall. There is something very familiar about this story: And why spend time translating one of the seminal novels with illustrations if its illustrations mean so little?
In this sense every photograph is either part of a portrait, or—in a wonderful equivocation—all the photographs rodenbxch a portrait.
A modern reader can’t help seeing the effect as Sebaldian. The hair does not even lose its colour. I am glad that This novel is not my style: Its crazy how many frail wives just fall sick and die in these old books.
Paradoxically, however, it will only do so if readers are familiar with or have access to the original photographs: Bruges is very much rodeenbach main character in the novel: Bruges, the bbruges city’, becomes a metaphor for Hugues’ dead wife as he follows its mournful labyrinth of streets and canals in a cyclical promenade of reflection and allusion–the ultimate evocation of Rodenbach’s lifelong love affair with the enduring mystery and mortuary atmosphere of Bruges.
Among these documents one finds, for instance, the pieces pictured below: He desperately misses his wife; and in the cloistral, muffled, moribund city of Bruges he finds the perfect analogue for geotges grief.
There is a climactic scene during a famous religious procession which Jane wishes to view from Hugues’s balcony. The Madonnas of the Primitives have similar flowing locks, descending in calm ripples. This is a religion which is supported by the mementos georhes the beloved dead wife includin A time of melancholic desperation.
And might it be somehow possible to recreate his lost love…? He spent the last ten years of his life in Paris as the correspondent of the Journal de Bruxelles, and was an intimate of Ed Georges Rodenbach was born in Tournai to a French mother and a German father from the Rhineland Andernach. He finds a thickly atrabilious style to fit his story, rich in imagery, full of strikingly bruhes turns of phrase. Some people, however, never manage to do that, they cannot move beyond tragic or upsetting events.
As in Vertigo when Madeleine Elster refuses to assume the persona that Scottie wants her to, Jane resists the transformation.
View all 6 comments. The novel is notable dodenbach two reasons, it was the archetypal Symbolist novel, and was the first work of fiction illustrated with photographs.
To ask other readers questions about Bruges-La-Morteplease sign up. It is the same view, but taken from about fifteen feet in front of the position the photographer stood for the first picture. Worth searching out for those wanting a nice gloomy masterpiece of dark imagination that touches bguges the decadent and fantastic. Needless to say, readers will have to turn to another edition if they want to see the photographs chosen by Rodenbach. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use.
From the beginning, as it is with any example of writing with images, there is a question of how the images are associated with the text.
There is a brooding openness to the supernatural, and a looming architectural presence, which also has clear links with the Gothic.
Everything appears reminiscent of the loss of our loved one.