Charms Additional Summary

Paul Valéry


(Critical Survey of Literature for Students)

Further Reading

Anderson, Kirsteen. Paul Valéry and the Voice of Desire. Oxford, England: Legenda, 2000. Uses linguistics, psychoanalysis, and other modern theories to examine the power of voice as both image and theme in Valéry’s work. Argues that his work is characterized by a tension between a “masculine” imagery and a repressed “feminine” dimension.

Gifford, Paul. Paul Valéry: Charmes. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, French and German Publications, 1995. An introductory overview of Charms designed for high school seniors and undergraduate students.

Gifford, Paul, and Brian Stimpson, eds. Reading Paul Valéry: Universe in Mind. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998. Collection of essays providing various interpretations of Valéry’s work. Includes discussion of Valéry’s mythological models, negative philosophy, fascination with science, and poetics of practice and theory. References to Charms and its individual poems are listed in the index.

Grubbs, Henry A. Paul Valéry. New York: Twayne, 1968. A comprehensive overview of Valéry’s life and work. Charms receives close attention in several sections. For readers new to Valéry, this is one of the best places to begin a detailed study.

Valéry, Paul. The Art of Poetry. Translated by Denise Folliot. Vol. 7 in The Collected Works of Paul Valéry, edited by Jackson Mathews. New York: Pantheon Books, 1958. Collection of essays, including one devoted specifically to Charms, in which Valéry discusses the original intentions at the base of his work. Provides information about the main points of contention between the poet and his critics.

Weiss, Ted, and Renee Weiss, comps. Quarterly Review of Literature: Special Issues Retrospective. Princeton, N.J.: Quarterly Review of Literature, 1976. From the publishers of one of America’s foremost literary quarterlies, this issue presents chronological sequences of critical works on an eclectic variety of poets. There are six essays on Valéry, beginning with one by T. S. Eliot.