11 November 2014

Jean Paulhan in the 5th arrondissement, Paris

1884 – 1968
DE 1940 À SA MORT'

And the house is at 5 rue des Arénes, quite close to the Jardin des Plantes. Jean Paulhan was the son of the philosopher Frédéric Paulhan. In 1920 he became secretary to Jacques Rivière at La Nouvelle Revue française (NRF), of which he was editor after Rivière's death in 1925 until 1940, sometimes writing as 'Jean Guérin'.

During World War II Paulhan wrote for a number of Resistance organs, and on one occasion was arrested, only to be saved by the collaborator Pierre Drieu la Rochelle, who had taken over as editor of the NRF. Paulhan later went into hiding until the Liberation.

Famously, Dominique Aury – secretly Paulhan's partner from 1953 to his death in 1968 – revealed in 1994 that she was the pseudonymous 'Pauline Réage' who wrote the 'pornographic' novel Histoire d'O (1954), which won the prix des Deux Magots the year after publication. It was her 'love letter' to Paulhan.

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