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Corydon

3.45  ·  Rating details ·  370 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Considered by Gide to be the most important of his books, this slim, exquisitely crafted volume consists of four dialogues on the subject of homosexuality and its place in society. Published anonymously in bits and pieces between 1911 and 1920, Corydon first appeared in a signed, commercial edition in France in 1924 and in the United States in 1950, the year before Gide's ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published July 18th 2001 by University of Illinois Press (first published 1924)
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Average rating 3.45  · 
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Yannis Thomadakis
Mar 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
The book that shaped my life to the very inch. When I was reading this marvellous dialogue and thesis in defence of homosexuality, I was completely mesmerised by the clarity of the arguments, the variation of philosophical and scientific opinions, the unprecedented compassion and acknowledgement of the Human Nature. This very small volume makes you see Homosexuality and Love in general with a more mature, down-to -earth perspective, as a natural selection of the living species on Earth. What is ...more
Marko
Oct 05, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3,5*
George K. Ilsley
A collection of essays which must be viewed in their historical contexts. This book was ahead of its time, but now reads as defensive, apologetic, and frankly quite boring to a modern or sympathetic reader.

Only by imagining how shocking and daring this topic was, just 20 years after Oscar Wilde was sent to jail and his family changed their name. The need for such a text as this speaks loudly of the times— and they were almost unimaginable in today’s world.
Keith
3.5 stars.

I was completely interested in reading the historical dialogues, debates and arguments about homosexuality put for in this book by Andre Gide that he had with Corydon nearly a 100 years ago.
The first dialogue: enjoyed.
The second dialogue: meh.
The third and fourth: enjoyed.
I love coming away learning and enhancing my perspective on being homosexual.
Emma Draws
2,5.
Essai sur l’homosexualité masculine sous forme de dialogue pour/contre. André Gide base son argumentation en faveur de l’homosexualité sur les travaux de Darwin sur les animaux, mais aussi sur les textes anciens et la civilisation grecque. Malheureusement son écriture est beaucoup trop scientifique, il utilise un tas de termes techniques qui empêchent la compréhension de certains arguments.
De plus, il utilise à plusieurs reprises des arguments misogynes et sexistes en faveur de l’homosexua
...more
Emme, o Fernando
May 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: rainbow
Nesse livro se desenvolvem quatro diálogos entre dois antigos amigos. Um deles é instigado a entender melhor a "irritante" questão da homossexualidade após deparar-se na impressa com a divulgação de um processo escandaloso sobre o tema. O amigo com quem procura esclarecer-se (Córidon) é conhecido por seu "desvio" de sexualidade. Segue daí uma argumentação rigorosa em defesa da homossexualidade.

De imediato, verifica-se uma argumentação que envereda por várias áreas do conhecimento: as ciências na
...more
Michael Flick
A "period piece" from a period that's way-back-when in modernism. The Socratic argument is weak and, I think, unnecessary. Gide takes the wrong approach here--but he was a writer of his time.

Of interest are his comments on Proust--his explanation of why Charlus is such a superior creation than Albertine.

And amusing that Gide feels offended when accused of not making his homosexuality explicit soon enough. His great works, "The Immoralist" and "The Counterfeiters" puts that accusation immediately
...more
Josephine (biblioseph)
Feb 09, 2018 marked it as to-not-read
Despite his eloquence, I just can't bring myself to read beautiful sentences if they're in defense of pederasty.

It's remarkable how beautifully crafted his journal is, even when writing about sex with underage boys. He doesn't even apologize!

What a waste. Wonder if I should just toss the rest of his books as well... There's so many other books I could read.
...more
Denizhan
May 18, 2020 rated it liked it
sevgili gide, bundan yaklaşık 120 yıl önce bu kitabı yazarkenki motivasyonunu düşününce sana bir kere daha hayran kaldım. biz 2020 yılında türkiye’de netflix eşcinselliği yayıyor, istanbul sözleşmesi aile kurumunu yok ediyor falan gibi şeyler okuyoruz her gün.

review olmadı bu, şikayet oldu. neyse.
Rodrigo
Aug 06, 2011 rated it liked it
Considerando que este libro fue publicado por primera vez hace casi un siglo, es sorprendente comprobar que la homofobia y la intolerancia no han cambiado prácticamente en nada sus argumentos y razones. Y sorprendente es también que Gide, citando libros, ensayos y estudios, construye una argumentación no muy diferente a la que podría elaborar algún estudioso del tema de la actualidad. Todo eso me hace pensar en lo básico de ambas posturas. Evidentemente se encuentran elementos que hoy en día cho ...more
Bonnie Morse
A quick read, a bit dated of course, but interesting for the historical perspective, as well as how much of it--particularly the first dialogue--still pertains today. Here we are, a hundred years after the first edition made perfectly cogent and undeniable arguments, continuing to have the same debate in almost the same words.

I do want to make a note on Gide's use of the word "pederast", which seems to confuse some reviewers. It doesn't have the same meaning as our word "pedophile", which denote
...more
Roof Beam Reader (Adam)
Some of the dialogues are more interesting and effective than others (the first is the best, and I can see why his friends encouraged him to stop while he was "ahead"), and the overall piece is certainly outdated; still, and unfortunately, much of the argument made here remains relevant. This is also an excellent example of the political, social, legal, and philosophical arguments surrounding homosexuality in the early-1900s. Gide makes a truly troubling slip at the very end of the final dialogu ...more
Vel Veeter
Apr 09, 2020 rated it liked it
This is a 1905 set of conversations (and maybe a novel? fiction?) with a philosopher who goes by the name of Corydon. The narrator and Corydon have a series of dialogues about homosexuality. In each, while trying to explore the topic thoroughly, Corydon takes on a different academic lens. They begin by discussing the topic within a moral and philosophical framework and begin off by using Walt Whitman’s poetry as a start. They offer the generally held belief that homosexuality is a perversion. So ...more
Jeff
Jan 08, 2021 rated it liked it
Gide’s “Corydon” is one of key works in what might be called “gay lit.” Cast as a Platonic “dialogue” between an oddly bigoted narrator and his gay friend Corydon, the book was originally published between 1911 and 1920, a remarkably early date for a writer to publish an open defense of sexual behavior that was still illegal in most places. While I appreciate the work’s historical importance, and am intrigued by the people who were strongly influenced by it (for example, composer Aaron Copland o ...more
Siegfried
Apr 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Brillante. Se lee hoy como una curiosa mezcla de pensamientos completamente abandonados y argumentos que están a la orden del día. Importante lectura de historia LGBT.

"–No es una confesión; es una constatación. Es por eso por lo que esta causa necesita mártires.
–¿Cómo define esa palabra...?
–Alguien que vaya a la vanguardia del ataque; que sin baladronadas, sin bravatas, soporte la reprobación, el insulto; o mejor, que goce de un valor, una probidad y una rectitud tan reconocidas que ponga en dud
...more
Mark
The issue regarding my reviewing this book is that some sections, as usual with my reading a french text, slip by me. I am glad that I read this. I am glad, also, that I read it in French. Although I have an interest in reading more gay literature, I would likely not have sought out this book as I had never heard of it. I was given a free French copy at a local book repository. This book, although he considered it his most important according to what I read, does not have the fame of the counter ...more
J
To be honest, the specific references to writers and scientists made some portions of this read quite dry, having neither the time nor wish to fully research exactly what was being talked about. But generally, this is filled with wise and often poignant moments in defense of homosexuality as it was considered in the early 20th century. Perhaps my first exposure to Gide ought not to have been in Socratic dialogue though, which I regularly find to be unnecessary.
Heyyonicki
Lecture plutôt éprouvante (normal, c'est Gide, ça n'allait tout de même pas être agréable) et tout de même très interessante ! Dommage que les termes techniques et les références aux quelques scientifiques ou écrivains soit très précises et spécifiques car elles nécéssitent de nombreux quarts d'heures de recherches complémentaires. Le discours tenu me semble assez cohérent, actuel et raisonné ; je ressors de cette lecture grandi. Je le relierai. ...more
Mason
Nov 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: queer-studies
A shockingly relevant piece of work, given its publication nearly a century ago. Gide poses a number of questions our cultural and moral arbiters still refuse to engage with, namely a self-righteous tendency to deem non-normative behaviors as immoral (excusing the tenuous and relativistic existence of norms in the first place).
Fernando
Mar 04, 2018 rated it it was ok
Más una pieza histórica que una lectura sugerente para hoy, aunque el estilo elegante y persuasivo de Gide siempre es una lección. “El inmoralista” pone en acción las ideas de este diálogo “socrático” sin tanta vuelta poco plausible.
Alessandro Lorini
Jan 10, 2020 rated it liked it
Non è un libro per tutti. Ma chi avrà voglia di leggerlo non potrà che trovarlo un gioiellino
Jeremy Hung
May 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"The important thing is not to know whether I have special interests in defending the cause, but whether it is worth defending." ...more
Joey
Nov 04, 2017 rated it liked it
An interesting defense of being gay from the early 20th century, when you could still be jailed for such a thing.
Ashley
I’m going to read this one more time before I rate it... I need to let it simmer in my brain a bit.
Alex
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Corydon, both a title and an allusion to a shepherd who loves a fellow shepherd, is André Gide’s defense of “uranist desires,” or what we call male homosexuality. It should be noted, Gide is specific about the type of same-sex love he is defending, love and sex between two men. It’s also worth noting that this text is not without missteps, notably his unsavory discussion about women, who use “veil and adornments” to lead men toward them. This particular translation by Richard Howard is superb; i ...more
Paulo Santos
Dec 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
I had been curious about reading Corydon for a while, due to its fame. I had read some of André Gide's books, and liked them, but had never been particularly impressed, except by Les Caves du Vatican, that featured some remarkable characters and daring moral questions for its day. Corydon is somewhat dated, but it is nevertheless interesting, especially because I think it is the first time in modern literature that someone talked about homosexuality as something natural, not as a vice or as a pe ...more
Pedro Menchén
Releo este libro 40 años después (la primera vez fue en 1971) y ha sido una completa decepción. No aporta nada, ni siquiera teorías anticuadas. Sólo hay divagaciones culturalistas sobre temas tangenciales a la homosexualidad, pero sin entrar de un modo serio en el asunto. Además, detecto unos cuantos despropósitos, mucha charlatanería barata y cotilleos sobre la antiguedad tendentes a demostrar una falsedad: que el hombre es más bello que la mujer (por eso, dice, hay más estatuas dedicadas a hom ...more
Micha
The first dialogue was interesting because the arguments were so like modern arguments about homosexuality. The second dialogue, consisting mostly of descriptions of animal mating habits, I found rather unfortunate and far too long. The third and fourth I felt included some of that depressing brand of gay male misogyny, which again one sometimes hears today. This was a formative text for early 20th century discussions of homosexuality, but it definitely doesn't last because Gide doesn't really t ...more
Παναγιώτης Βαλλιανάτος
First and foremost I admired Gide’s frankness: To write this exquisite dialogue pro homosexuality; The way he uses arguments from the fields of biology, philosophy, history in order to point out the liquidity of the sexual instinct and the force of social imperative that leads to the delusion of its certainty.
Katrinka
Aug 01, 2011 rated it liked it
Unsure how to rate this; in terms of literary intrigue, there isn't much-- but then again, that's not what the book was designed for. What I find fascinating is that this piece, written ca. 100 years ago, could probably still be brought into the contemporary debate on gender preferences. ...more
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André Paul Guillaume Gide was a French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in literature in 1947. Gide's career ranged from its beginnings in the symbolist movement, to the advent of anticolonialism between the two World Wars.

Known for his fiction as well as his autobiographical works, Gide exposes to public view the conflict and eventual reconciliation between the two sides of his personality, s
...more

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“What was doubly disconcerting for me was that he showed such extraordinary and precocious insight in describing his own feelings that I felt he was making my own confession.” 7 likes
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