Sketchbook's Reviews > If it Die...

If it Die... by André Gide
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's review
Apr 17, 2011

really liked it

Gideiana & the Money Shot : 1947 Nobel winner Gide, after recalling childhood, schooldays and aesthetic growth among friends Pierre Louys and Mallarme, delivers. "My joy was unbounded...I cannot imagine it greater, even if love had been added." Never confuse, as do many, desire with love. That little Arab boy left him in a state of "passionate jubilation."

Published in 1920, two decades after "The Immoralist," Gide offers his back-story. Gide, a founder in 1909 of the influential Le Nouvel Revue Francaise, was disarmingly frank in a world where hypocrisy reigned. Though some of the writing and memories here are clotted, you appreciate his candor and erudition. You also appreciate his personal and literary audacity.

Coming from a strong Protestant background, he says God himself would surely loathe a uniformity of nature and any teaching that tried to subdue it. He required his "mind's assent" to the wishes of his body. As for memoirs, which this is: "Everything is always more complicated than one makes out."

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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Gregsamsa (new)

Gregsamsa I've only read The Counterfeiters, which was a little disappointing after hearing so much about his scan'lous reputation; this sounds more interesting.

Sketchbook In the last pages Gide lets it rip most effectively, so I give 4-stars, ignoring some early tedious passages, for his straightforward writing in 1920. This wasn't published in US til 1935.

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