Nelson ALGREN.

Lot 36
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3000 - 4000 EUR
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Result : 11 374EUR
Nelson ALGREN.
Chicago: City on the Make. Garden City, NY, Doubleday & Company, 1951.
In-12 : Bradel blue half cloth, full color illustrated dust jacket (publisher's binding).
First edition.
Famous essay on the then changing city of Chicago. Nelson Algren (1909-1981) was a committed novelist who achieved success with The Man with the Golden Arm (1949). Several of his novels were adapted for the cinema.
He met Simone de Beauvoir in 1947, to whom he dedicated A Walk on the Wild Side (1955). They had a passionate affair which Simone de Beauvoir evoked in Les Mandarins, the source of an extraordinary and voluminous correspondence.
Exceptional autograph letter signed on one of the endpapers:
For Sartre, always a captain and nearly a general with friendship from Algren, always a private and nearly a sergeant!
Two beautiful typed and signed letters from Nelson Algren are attached, one addressed to his first wife, Michèle Vian - who was Sartre's mistress - and another to Boris Vian.
(2 signed typed letters, each 1 p. in-4.)
The letter addressed (probably in 1949) to "My dear Zasu", typed in red ink and adorned with an original coloured pencil drawing, is full of humour. It evokes Simone de Beauvoir's stay in the United States:
Please tell Jean-Paul that I'm worried about Castor: she will eat nothing but hot dogs and
Corn Flakes, drink nothing but coca-cola, bathes twice a day and is in love with Errol
Flynn. Myself, I love only the Marshall Plan, the North Atlantic Pact, the Truman Doctrine, the Open-Door Policy [...] La Fayette we are here, Chevalier Please Come Back, Petain
We Miss You, Carpentier Were Did You Go, and Mistinguette - but I think Castor goes too far. For when I try to learn from her what is literature, she shows me a copy of something called "I' ll Spit on Your Grave" and says that is literature.
Juliette Greco is then discussed at some length.
The letter to Boris Vian, also in English, is about the edition of The Man with the Golden Arm. Translated into French by Boris Vian, the novel was to be published by Gallimard, which had already paid Algren. But André Bey of Stock offered more, and Algren imagined he could take back his rights to the book and sell it a second time, as Gallimard had been too slow to publish it. (The book was published by Gallimard.)
The copy also bears handwritten annotations, in Boris Vian's hand, probably for a translation of the book.
The dust jacket is worn and restored with adhesive paper.
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