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Les Enfants Terribles
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A tragedy about the power of the imagination and the strange, claustrophobic world of childhood

Jean Cocteau (1889-1963) - poet, novelist, dramatist, artist, musician, choreographer, film-maker, and actor - was one of the most talented Frenchmen of the twentieth century and a leading figure in the Surrealist movement. In addition to his popular novel Les Enfants terribles (1929), he is best remembered in the English-speaking world for the film of Orph-e (1950) and perhaps his play La Machine infernale (1934).

About the Author

Jean Cocteau (1889-1963) - poet, novelist, dramatist, artist, musician, choreographer, film-maker, and actor - was one of the most talented Frenchmen of the twentieth century and a leading figure in the Surrealist movement. In addition to his popular novel Les Enfants terribles (1929), he is best remembered in the English-speaking world for the film of Orph-e (1950) and perhaps his play La Machine infernale (1934).

Reviews

"The lasting feeling that his work leaves is one of happiness; not of course in the sense that it excludes suffering, but because, in it, nothing is rejected, resented or regretted" -- W. H. Auden
"Cocteau's tale of young beauties whose isolation leads them towards premature decay...a genuine tragedy" * Independent on Sunday *
"The novel Les Enfants Terrible has become a rite of passage in every French childhood" * Guardian *
"If La Belle et la Bete his romance, then Les Enfants Terribles is his tragedy. Like the others, it articulates Cocteau's belief in the power of imagination to transform the ordinary world into a world of magic" -- Philip Glass
"Cocteau never meant his work to pass as anyone else's, and even when it is imitative it bears a maker's mark that would disqualify any forger: the stamp of a master of paradox and aesthetic epigram, who supplied a unique - and enduring - connection between the classic and the new" -- Francis Steegmuller

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