"Angoisse" is a tough one: anguish, distress, anxiety, dread, agony.
BTW, "noir" means dark as well as black.
Also BTW, that was a very quick translation and could do with a little
revision. Don't know now why I decided on torment.
On 16/09/2009 1:13 PM, Allan Guthrie wrote:
> Jim, I don't see how you can claim that Duhamel's definition of noir is the
> correct one, and then completely ignore it. Here's a translation (thanks to
> Karin Montin) of Duhamel's Serie Noire manifesto, resurrected from the
> rara-avis archives:
> "Let unwary readers be warned: books in the Serie Noire cannot safely be
> placed in just any hands. Those who like Sherlock Holmes-type puzzles won't
> find what they're looking for. Neither will systematic optimists. The
> immorality generally accepted in this type of work solely to serve as a foil
> for conventional morality is just as much at home there as fine feelings,
> even just plain amorality. The spirit of such books is rarely conformist. In
> them there are police more corrupt than the criminals they're chasing. The
> nice detective doesn't always solve the mystery. Sometimes there is no
> mystery. And sometimes there isn't even a detective. And so? So what remains
> is action, torment and violence, in all its forms, especially the most
> shameful--from beatings to massacres. As in good films, moods are expressed
> through actions, and readers who are fond of introspective literature will
> have to do the reverse gymnastics. There is also love--preferably
> bestial--disorderly passion, pitiless hate. In short, our goal is quite
> simple: to keep you from sleeping."
> The focus would appear to be on non-conformity, corruption, immorality,
> confounding expectations, action, torment ('angoisse': also translates as
> anxiety, as far as I can tell), violence, lack of introspection, extreme and
> destructive emotions. The words 'dark' and 'sinister' aren't even mentioned.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "JIM DOHERTY"<firstname.lastname@example.org>
>> Noir, as the term is popularly used, relates to a novel (film, etc.) that
>> has a dark and sinister atmosphere. Atmosphere has everything to do with
> Look at the wide array of novels published under the Serie Noire line. Look
> at the vast array of films designated as noir. Are the editors (who, after
> all, COINED the term) using it incorrectly? Are the huge number of people
> using the word noir in that sense somehow outside of the mainstream?
>> Marcel Duhamel started putting the plans for Gallimard's new mystery line
>> featuring primarily translations of American crime novels, SERIE NOIRE, in
>> motion as early as 1944. The first book published under the SERIE NOIRE
>> banner came out in, IIRC, September of 1945.
> RARA-AVIS home page: http://www.miskatonic.org/rara-avis/
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-- Karin Montin
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