François Malherbe Analysis


(Great Authors of World Literature, Critical Edition)

Abraham, Claude K. Enfin Malherbe: The Influence of Malherbe on French Lyric Prosody, 1605-1674. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1971. A good discussion of Malherbe doctrine, giving insight into the importance of Malherbe and the role he played in the development of literature in France.

Campion, Edmund J. “Poetic Theory in Théophile de Viau’s ‘Élégie à une dame.’” Concerning Poetry 20 (1987): 1-9. Describes why Malherbe’s contemporary Théophile de Viau rejected Malherbe’s attempt to impose one standard on all poets. Unlike Malherbe, Théophile de Viau believed that a truly original poet must develop his or her unique style and voice.

Chesters, G. “Malherbe, Ponge, and Revolutionary Classicism.” In The Classical Tradition in French Literature. London: Grant and Cutler, 1977. Describes well the arguments in Francis Ponge’s 1965 book Pour un Malherbe in which this eminent twentieth-century French poet attempted rather successfully to rehabilitate Malherbe’s poetry but not his poetics.

Gershuny, Walter, “Seventeenth-Century Commemorative Verse.” Cahiers du dix-septième 3, no.1 (Spring, 1989): 279-289. Explains very clearly formal poems which the court poet Malherbe wrote to honor the French kings Henry IV and Louis XIII.

Gosse, Edmond. Malherbe and the Classical Reaction in the Seventeenth Century. Oxford, England: Clarendon Press, 1920. This study deals specifically with Malherbe’s importance to the creation of French classical literature.

Rubin, David Lee. Higher, Hidden Order: Design and Meanings in the Odes of Malherbe. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1972. A book-length study on the rhetoric of praise and blame in the numerous odes that Malherbe wrote during the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Like Abraham, Rubin argues that Malherbe was a more successful and effective poet than traditional criticism indicates.

Wadsworth, Phillip A. “Malherbe and His Influence.” In Studies in Seventeenth Century French Literature Presented to Morris Bishop. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1962. A concise evaluation of the importance of Malherbe as a critic and theorist.

Winegarter, Rene. French Lyric Poetry in the Age of Malherbe. Manchester, England: Manchester University Press, 1954. A useful consideration of Malherbe’s work in the light of that of his contemporaries.