Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Literary Critique of Jacques Prevert



 By Wilson Manyuira


Thesis statement
            Having began his work as a member of a French opposition movement, he breaks away to actualize his dreams of an individualistic and experimental way of doing things. Due to those his uniqueness is widely regarded as a rebellious move rather than liberalism. But does charting a different path from that traditionally used by poets give him any mileage or condemns him to oblivion? Does his unassuming lack of regard in Attacking “social injustices and religious immorality” in favour of hitting on specific names, render anything good towards his course?


Statement of Work
            Born and bred in the French capital, his language diversity is limited to only his vernacular languages. But his mastery of French language is undoubtedly reputable world over as evidenced in his works. He masterfully and skillfully plays with his words, “Even if happiness forgets you a little bit, never completely forget about it.”(pg8 ,paroles), to pass his message.
            Unlike other poets of his era,-and even of modern age-, he appears uninterested in poetic mystification but rather pass across what he has for the reader, I.e communicate. He doesn't demand that the reader demystify the “hidden meaning” , but invites him/her to enjoy the reading. This earns him the title the unliterary poet from fellow writers. 
            Prevert does not seek to exploit the cognitive abilities of the readers. He instead takes a look-and-feel approach which most readers identify with. Perhaps as a reminder that he also possesses those poetic complexes that most writers treasure and seem to be obsessed with the randomly spice his works with magnificent interceptions of verbal elegance.  This he however does in plain and straight forward idiom-so to speak-, through hyperbole, puns, rhyme schemes, tongue twisters and flavourous blending in of slang.
            But his unassuming nature and the inate tendency to follow his own convictions rather than the Mass opinion(s) wins the hearts of readers for him. This is because they easily identify with his work thus viewing his poets as good readings. His plays, films and children books are also popular with readers since they are easy to understand. This defines his style of writing.
            Also, Jacques Prevert totally ignores the existing writers/poets cliché of condemning societal self-instigated problems,-in their works-, choosing to take the bulls by the horns instead.   Through his work, jacques rubs the existing regime the wrong way, but for the course of French proletariats.
            Unlike fellow poets, whose main goal is normally presumed to be driving a wedge between social class. Though  Prevert shows his distate in the way the bourgeoisie and the immplements of power conduct the business “" …...... all Anti-bourgeoisie, anti-Church, anti-militarist, and anti-intellectual......: ”, he appears to be more passionate on the welfare of the Poor thus earning the title pro-proletariat. This is demonstrated in many of his poems such as Paris at night,-translated:-
Three matchsticks lit one by one in the night
The first to see the whole of your face
The second to see your eyes
The third to see your mouth
And complete darkness to remember this all
With you locked in my arms (paroles),
among  other poems, where he tries to motivate the poor people, that everything,- even leisures of love- is possible, even within the poverty constraints,- three matchsticks.
Jacques Prevert also “tempers the acid of the satirist with the honey of a lyrical poet” (Baker, 1988), when he expresses empathy to the proletariats. This is recurrent in his work while also applauding them prudently though. Here, Jacques shows that he has not yet lost touch with his humble backgrounds where he did not even get enough formal education. His works play a critical role in advancing the course of the surrealist movement while also improving the welfare of this proletariats.
Conclusion
            Inability is not disability. Prevert is well aware that his rather “patched-together” education is a hindrance towards his poetic ambitions. But he doesn't allow it to be a problem at all. His divergence to an individualistic style doesn't earn him much applause at the beginning. But this coupled with determination that exemplifies his character, achieves for him much honors at the end that speaks for themselves.

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