Death of Claude Vigée, poet of joy

The Alsatian Jewish poet and former resistance fighter Claude Vigée died at the age of 99, the mayor of his hometown, Bischwiller announced on Saturday. “Today Bischwiller is bruised and mourns the disappearance of Claude Vigée”, wrote on Facebook the councilor of this city located north-east of Strasbourg, Jean-Luc Netzer. The work of Claude Vigée, in French, Alsatian and German, is marked by the violence of the 20th century and questions of linguistic identity.

Claude Vigée has passed away. Today Bischwiller is bruised and mourns the disappearance of Claude Vigée. On the eve…

Posted by Jean Luc Netzer on Saturday October 3, 2020

Poetry, quest for joy

During a meeting with Michel Kubler for The cross, in 2009, he described his relationship to poetry as follows: “It’s not a vocation, no. Rather a drive “. A quest “Not of joy but of” the “joy ».

→ READ. Claude Vigée’s meeting with Michel Kubler, Claude Vigée, watchtower of life

“Patois and dialects, remnants of an existence close to the native soil, are good schools of silence. We do there, better than in the Sorbonne or in the cocktails of the great Parisian publishers, the original experience of the human being ”, he wrote in “The Winter Moon” in 1970.

Born Claude Strauss in 1921, near the banks of the Rhine where his family speaks Alsatian, he was forced to leave the region at the start of World War II to become a student in Toulouse. He joined the Resistance, choosing the name under which he would publish his work, starting in the review. “Poetry 42” directed by Pierre Seghers. Faced with the risk, he had chosen to leave France at the end of 1942 for the United States, via the port of Lisbon. There he began a university career as a professor of literature, which he continued in Israel from 1960 until his retirement, before returning to France.

→ READ ALSO. Claude Vigée listens to the silence of the human night

Invited by Cardinal Lustiger, he was in 2006 the first Jewish-Jewish personality to speak at Notre-Dame de Paris, as part of the Lent Conferences.

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