Other literary forms

(Survey of Novels and Novellas)

Raymond Queneau (keh-NOH) was a prolific writer in many forms in addition to long fiction. He published a dozen major collections of poetry and many opuscules published in private or limited additions. His poetry spoofs the seriousness of twentieth century poetry through the use of odd end-rhymes, slang, and invented forms; at the same time, he also manages to deal with serious subjects. One of Queneau’s best-known works is the unclassifiable Exercises de style (1947; Exercises in Style, 1958). In this work, he takes the kernel of anarrative and in a dazzling series of ninety-nine variations investigates the limits of the possibilities of language. Queneau also wrote essays, criticism, and the dialogue for several of the film adaptations of his novels.