File 21 - A.l.s. with envelope from Émile Zola to Ély Halpérine-Kaminsky

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CA ON00389 C8-4-21


A.l.s. with envelope from Émile Zola to Ély Halpérine-Kaminsky


  • 1888 (Creation)

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1 letter

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  1. A.l.s. with envelope from Émile Zola to Ély Halpérine-Kaminsky (1858-1936), Médan, 18 January 1888, 2 p. This letter continues the conversation begun in letter 21. Zola gives Halpérine-Kaminsky his permission to publish his letter of 9 January 1888 (no 21), on the condition that he publishes the letter in its entirety. Zola goes on to comment on the question of plays written to be read versus plays written to be performed, and concludes that this is a fiction put forth by the critics : for Zola, there are plays which excite the public and plays which do not. He cites as an example the dramas of Alfred de Musset, which were written to be read, but which were still being performed in Zola’s day. On the other hand, Zola continues, many contemporary plays which were meant to be performed rather than read have already fallen into oblivion. He concludes that one must not generalize about the “theatre public”, since there are many different types of audiences. Halpérine-Kaminsky (see notes to letter 22) published Zola’s letter in an article which appeared in La Nouvelle Revue on 1 February 1888. The play itself was first performed at André Antoine’s Théâtre Libre in 10 February 1888 with great success. The envelope is stamped and franked, and reads : “Monsieur E. Halpérine, 85 boulevard de Port-Royal, Paris”.
    Published in Correspondance, vol. VI, page 242-243 (letter 202).

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Box 12 Folder 205

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