Tournier, Michel 1924–
Tournier, Michel 1924–
(Michel Édouard Tournier)
PERSONAL: Born December 19, 1924, in Paris, France; son of Alphonse (a records rights dealer) and Marie-Madeleine (Fournier) Tournier. Education: Attended University of Paris and University of Tübingen. Hobbies and other interests: Photography.
ADDRESSES: Home—Le Presbytere, Choisel, 78460 Chevreuse, France. Office—c/o Beverly Gordey, Collins Publishers, 16 rue de Savoie, 75006 Paris, France.
CAREER: Writer. Producer and director, R.T.F., 1949–54; press attaché Europe No. 1, 1955–58; Editions Plon, Paris, France, director of literary services, 1958–68; host of television series Le Chambre noire, 1960–65; radio announcer, Europe Numero Un; translator. Founder of Recontres Internationales de Photographie (annual festival), Arles, France. Frequent guest on television talk shows. Guest lecturer in France, Germany, and Africa.
MEMBER: Academie Goncourt.
AWARDS, HONORS: Grand Prix du Roman, Academie Française, 1967, for Vendredi; ou, Les Limbes du Pacifique; Prix Goncourt, 1970, for Le Roi des Aulnes; Goethe Medal, 1993; honorary doctorate, University College London, 1997; named Officier de la Legion d'Honneur, and Commander, Ordre National du Mérite.
Vendredi; ou, Les Limbes du Pacifique, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1967, revised edition, 1978, translation by Norman Denny published as Friday, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1969, published Friday; or, The Other Island, Collins (London, England), 1969.
Le Roi des Aulnes, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1970, translation by Barbara Bray published as The Ogre, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1972, published as The Erl King, Collins (London, England), 1972).
Vendredi; ou, La Vie sauvage (for children), Flammarion (Paris, France), 1971, translation by Ralph Manheim published as Friday and Robinson: Life on Esperanza Island, Knopf (New York, NY), 1972.
Les Meteores, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1975, translation by Anne Carter published as Gemini, Double-day (Garden City, NY), 1981, reprinted, Johns Hopkins University Press (Baltimore, MD), 1998.
Gaspard, Melchior et Balthazar, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1980, translation by Ralph Manheim published as The Four Wise Men, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1982.
Gilles et Jeanne, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1983, translation by Alan Sheridan published as Gilles and Jeanne, Grove Press (New York, NY), 1987.
A Garden at Hammamet (originally published as Un Jardin a Hammamet), translation by Barbara Wright, Lord John Press (Northridge, CA), 1985.
La Goutte d'or, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1986, translation by Barbara Wright published as The Golden Droplet, Doubleday (New York, NY), 1987.
Angus, illustrations by Pierre Joubert, Signe de Piste (Wattignies, France), 1988.
Le Medianoche Amoureux, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1989, translation by Barbara Wright published as The Midnight Love Feast, Minerva (London, England), 1991.
The Mirror of Ideas, translation by Jonathan Krell, University of Nebraska Press (Lincoln, NE), 1998.
Eleazar, Exodus to the West, translation by Jonathan Krell, University of Nebraska Press (Lincoln, NE), 2002.
Le Fetischiste: Un Acte por un homme seul (play; also see below), first produced 1974, produced Off-Broadway, 1984.
Arroyo (portraits), K. Flinker (Paris, France), 1974.
Le Coq de bruyere (collection; includes the play Le Fetischiste: Un Acte por un homme seul, first produced 1974, produced Off-Broadway, 1984), Gallimard (Paris, France), 1978, translation by Barbara Wright published as The Fetishist and Other Stories, Doubleday (New York, NY), 1984.
Le Vent paraclet (autobiography), Gallimard (Paris, France), 1977, translation by Arthur Goldhammer published as The Wind Spirit: An Autobiography, Beacon Press (Boston, MA), 1988.
(With Edouard Boubat) Canada: Journal de voyage (nonfiction), photographs by Edouard Boubat, La Press (Paris, France), 1977, published as Journal de voyage au Canada, Robert Laffont (Toulouse, France), 1984.
(With Joseph Goebbels) Derniers carnets, Flammarion (Paris, France), 1977.
Amandine ou Les Deux Jardins (for children; also see below), Rouge et Or (Paris, France), 1977.
La Famille des enfants (short prose and photos), Flammarion (Paris, France), 1977.
(With Georges Lemoine) Des clefs et des serrures (short prose and photos), Editions du Chene/Hachette (Paris, France), 1979.
Le Fugue du Petit Poucet (story), Rouge et Or (Paris, France), 1979.
Pierrot et les secrets de la nuit, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1979.
Barbedor (short prose and photos), Gallimard (Paris, France), 1980.
Vues de dos (short prose and photos), Gallimard (Paris, France), 1981.
Le Vol du Vampire (essays), Mercure de France (Paris, France), 1981.
L'Aire du muguet, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1982.
(With Konrad R. Mueller) Francois Mitterand (biography), Flammarion (Paris, France), 1983.
Les Rois Mages, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1983.
(With Jean-Max Toubeau) Le Vagabond immobile, Gallimard (Paris, France), 1984.
Sept contes (stories), Gallimard (Paris, France), 1984.
Marseille, ou Le Present incertain (short prose and photos), P.U.F. (Paris, France), 1985.
Le Tabor et le Sinai: Essais sur l'art contemporain, Belfond (Paris, France), 1989.
Le Crepuscule Des Masques (prose and photos), Hobeke (Paris, France), 1992.
(Author of essay) Arno Rafael Minkkinen, Waterline, photographs by Minkkinen, Aperture (New York, NY), 1994.
(Author of essay) Alaia Azzedine, Alaia, photographs by Azzedine, Distributed Art Publishers/Steigl (Göttingen, Germany), 1998.
Celebrations: Essais, Mercure de France (Paris, France), 1999.
Journal extime (nonfiction), Musardine (Paris, France), 2002.
Also author of introduction to books, including Aventures et secrets du collectionneur, by Laurent Gouvion Saint-Cyr, Stock (Paris, France), 1971; Venise, hier et demain, photographs by Fulvia Roiter, Editions du Chene (Paris, France), 1973; Mers, plages, sources et torrents, arbres, by Lucien Clergue, Editions Perceval (Paris, France), 1974; Morts et resurrections de Dieter Appelt, photographs by Dieter Appelt, Herscher (Paris, France), 1981; and Lucien Clergue: Eros and Thanatos, by Marrianne Fulton, International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House/Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1985. Contributor, Noël Pasquier (catalog), Fragments (Paris, France), 2001. Translator of many German novels, including the works of Erich Maria Remarque.
ADAPTATIONS: Several stories published in the collection Le Coq de bruyere have been adapted for and broadcast on French television.
SIDELIGHTS: Winner of two prestigious French literary prizes, Michel Tournier is a radical social critic, challenging cultural notions of the social contract handed down through myth and creating characters who select alternative modes of relating to their environment. The products of a highly imaginative mind, his novels—consisting primarily of philosophical speculation—are not for the casual reader. Like the works of Thomas Pynchon, John Barth, and Vladimir Nabokov, Tournier's tales are densely packed with a complex network of symbols and allusions. Because of this, they have sometimes been criticized for their pretentiousness and for their occasionally disturbing and even frightening themes. Narrators of his tales include a pederast and a fetishist who is obsessed with lingerie. The controversial nature of his subjects has brought him much critical attention. "In Europe, where Tournier is recognized as the major French novelist of the past 20 years," commented Bob Halliday in the Washington Post Book World, "his morally often uncomfortable works have aroused hot controversy and sold in the millions."
Born in Paris in 1924 to parents with an interest in Germany, Tournier learned to speak German and developed a critical view of Parisian life. After spending most of his college years in Tübingen following World War II, he scored poorly on the French philosophy exam, and so he began working as a literary translator. In La Vent paraclet (The Wind Spirit: An Autobiography), he explains that his understanding of literary style allowed him to produce French translations that were also translations into the style of French novelists such as Emile Zola, Gustave Flaubert, and Guy de Maupassant. When he recognized that his education in philosophy was excellent preparation for writing novels, he spent fifteen years figuring out how to combine myth, philosophy, and fiction. After completing three original novels that he judged unworthy of publication, Tournier wrote Vendredi; ou, Les Limbes du Pacifique (Friday) and Les Roi des Aulnes (The Ogre), which quickly established him as one of the most remarkable writers to appear on the postwar French literary scene. Tournier's first published original novel, Friday, came out in print when he was forty-three.
Beginning with the traditional Robinson Crusoe formula (which views man as a rational, tool-using creature who seeks to control his world through the imposition of physical and social order), in Friday Tournier deviates from the Daniel Defoe version somewhat to stress the existence of other alterna-tives—mainly non-rational and non-technical ones—that humans have at their disposal to deal with the environment. While both Defoe and Tournier's castaways at first strive to "civilize" life on their little island, Tournier has his Crusoe gradually become less and less interested in imposing his will on nature as he grows mystically closer to his surroundings. By the time his would-be savior Friday arrives, Crusoe is ready to go completely "native." In a reversal of the roles found in the original Crusoe story, with Friday as his teacher Crusoe learns to abandon the old European conventions as he sheds his clothes, worships the sun, and eats, sleeps, and works only when he feels like it. Tournier has Friday, not Crusoe, join the crew of a rescue ship headed for Europe while Crusoe remains on the island. Thus, as opposed to the rationalism espoused by the eighteenth-century Defoe, Tournier, using the same basic material, suggests another, more "modern" approach to determining one's place in the natural world—an approach that is more sensual and spontaneous, and largely independent of culturally transmitted values. At first glance, a New Yorker critic found all of Tournier's philosophizing to be "not a particularly attractive prospect" for a novel. Yet, he concluded, "Tournier is a cultivated and disciplined writer, and his Robinson … is most likable."
With the publication of The Ogre, Tournier received worldwide attention. Based in part on Johann von Goethe's poem "The Erl King," The Ogre is set in Germany between 1938 and 1945, where an imprisoned giant of a Frenchman, Abel Tiffauges, serves his Nazi captors as a procurer of young boys for an elite Hitler youth camp. Tiffauges, who fears chaos, is happy to be a member of a group where his values and function are so clearly defined. The brooding Tiffauges views his role in life as that of a "beast of burden," a man who will save himself by saving others, yet he is haunted by the symbolic nature of his own actions and of the destructive actions of mankind in general. Readers find his role difficult to determine, for while Tiffauges seems, in the end, to be a somewhat shadowy symbol of resistance (he dies after marching into a bog while carrying a Jewish child he rescued from a concentration camp), he can also—as the author suggests when someone attempts to assassinate him on July 20, 1944—be regarded as an embodiment of Hitler as well.
Many critics, including Jean Amery in Merkur, gave the book a hostile reception, calling it a glorification of neo-Nazi ideals. However, William Cloonan argued in the Dictionary of Literary Biography that this reading results from mistaking Tiffauges as a spokesman for Tournier, who has deliberately presented his character in a negative light. It also ignores the fact that Tournier depicts Tiffauges as a man separated from recognizing the ultimate evil of his actions by elaborate self-delusions. Cloonan related that "Tournier is depicting a deeply confused person whose personality is at once a portrait and parody of the Nazi psyche," and an illustration of how important it is for individuals and nations to distinguish between fantasy and reality.
Other critics, too, have been baffled by the multiplicity of ideas and interpretations present in the story, yet they still regard reading it as a worthwhile literary experience. In Newsweek Peter Prescott called it a "fine novel" that is "more likely to be praised than read." "The Ogre is built in the way Bach built his fugues; themes and statements are introduced, inverted, tangled and marched past each other, all to be resolved in loud, majestic chords," explained Prescott. He added, "And yet the symbols and correspondences of this story, which are far more complex than I have been able to indicate, would be insufficient to sustain it as fiction. Tournier's achievement rests in his remarkable blend of myth with realism…. [He] offers a succession of scenes … which, as Abel says, not only decipher the essence of existence, but exalt it."
As he reveals in Le Vent paraclet, Tournier makes a conscious effort to include "eternal and disturbing" elements in novels that are otherwise conventional (as opposed to experimental) in form. For example, in the novel Gaspard, Melchior et Balthazar (The Four Wise Men), a retelling of the Biblical story of the Magi, the three Wise Men come to Bethlehem to see the Messiah, and they resolve some personal problems when they find him. Cloonan related, "Gaspard is black and ashamed of his skin color. Balthazar's love of art puts him at odds with the religious bigots who control his court, and Melchior is the victim of a palace revolt that has cost him his throne…. [In Bethlehem,] Gaspard sees that the infant in the manger is black; Balthazar's conscience is eased by the discovery that any depiction of the world is a tribute to the Creator; and Melchior … realizes that the kingdom he has really been seeking is not of this world."
In the novel, a fourth seeker of the Christ Child misses the birth of the Messiah, spends the next thirty-three years in prison in another man's place, misses the crucifixion, eats the leftovers from the Last Supper, and is welcomed into heaven. Meanwhile, the other kings, moved by their encounter with the Christ Child, become "nurturing" men, capable of sheltering children with a care usually associated with maternal instincts. Critics applauded Tournier for accomplishing a unique blend of religious and secular elements. Cloonan saw in The Four Wise Men an important development in Tournier's work. "In the earlier novels his characters feared complexity and sought elaborate, albeit simplistic ways of clarifying experience. This novel champions the complex and appreciates disorder as a part of life…. Tournier's earlier heroes might have opted for one pole of [a dichotomy] over the other: blackness rather than kingship, power over poverty, or flesh instead of spirit. Such simplifications do not occur in Gaspard, Melchior et Balthazar, and in fact there are numerous parodies of what earlier had appeared to be insoluble dichotomies." At the manger, they discover that in godhead incarnate the opposite poles of many dichotomies are resolved in paradox. As Tournier writes: "Cet Heritier du Royaume mele des attributs incompatibles, la grandeur et la petitesse, la puissance et l'innocence, la plenitude et la pauvrete" (This Heir to the Kingdom mingles incomparable attributes, greatness and smallness, power and innocence, plenitude and poverty).
In his 2002 novel, Eleazar, Exodus to the West, Tournier once again draws on biblical myth, comparing the journey of Moses across the desert to that of American immigrants heading west in search of a better life. The book tells the story of Eleazar O'Braid, an Irish Protestant minister and former shepherd, who embarks on a journey to the "promised land" of California with his family. A critic for Kirkus Reviews called this one of the author's "most accessible and attractive books." A Publishers Weekly reviewer noted that Tournier's story features "a thought-provoking series of twists and turns."
Tournier's novel La Goutte d'or treats the theme of the quest for identity in a world where images are valued more than realities, where the primary force of culture seems to be its ability to construct convincing illusions. Idriss, a young Berber shepherd, for example, leaves Northern Africa to discover that "the Sahara desert, a subject of study and romanticization among the French and for many other Westerners as well, it is a concept unknown to its inhabitants," Cloonan explained. "The Sahara is as much an intellectual structure as a geographical location for those who live far from it…. For Idriss the Sahara is … a constantly shifting series of designs in the sand, a world alien to permanence of any sort. The Sahara is a fixed entity only when its ambiguous, transitory qualities are denied by an act tantamount to fictionalization." The Africa perceived in the Western world bears no resemblance to the continent as Idriss knows it, demonstrating the power of images to supercede realities.
Idriss is warned that he will lose his identity if he is photographed or becomes a model for a clothing store. Eventually he does lose the golden nugget of the title—a mark of citizenship once worn by Romans—which is a symbol of his identity. Tracing this loss and the boy's attempts to regain his goutte d'or, Tournier also writes a revealing depiction of Arab and Western traditional world views in conflict. He explores, too, the differences between film and written fiction as media having different possibilities, different limitations, and differing impacts on people through culture. Idriss begins to regain his identity when he studies Arab calligraphy, though his later act—an attempt to steal what he thinks is his lost goutte d'or from a storefront window display—reinforces Tournier's message about the power of visual images.
Tournier weaves his unique tales on the frames of conventional forms of fiction. According to a Times Literary Supplement reviewer, the author confesses to adhering to an orthodox structure "partly as bait, in order to get people to read what they might otherwise refuse. Deception is needed because he is a metaphysical novelist, more likely to find charm and inspiration in [the philosophers] Leibniz or Spinoza than in the work of other novelists…. He adapts the supposedly safe conventions of realism to fantastic, transcendent ends." This strategy makes Tournier's novels more accessible than the works of other fabulists, and partly accounts for their popularity among less sophisticated readers as well as those who take an interest in Tournier's philosophical concerns. Roger Shattuck explained in the New York Review of Books: "Insofar as they adapt existing legends and celebrate earlier forms of wisdom, his works leave behind the preoccupation with originality that has propelled the arts for the last two centuries…. By sparing himself the need to innovate in form, he has been able to direct his inventive powers simultaneously toward elaborat-ing a story line and toward marshalling a powerful style." Cloonan felt that readers appreciate Tournier's pessimistic yet "smiling" view of the human condition. He explained: "Tournier's work displays few illusions about human goodness, and even less confidence in the collective progress of mankind. His books do, however, reflect a continuous amazement before the wonder of life, before the incredible privilege of being alive."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Anderson, Christopher, Michel Tournier's Children: Myth, Intertext, Initiation, Lang (New York, NY), 1996.
Cloonan, William, Michel Tournier, Twayne (Boston, MA), 1985.
Colin, Davis, Michel Tournier: Philosophy and Fiction, Clarendon Press (New York, NY), 1988.
Contemporary Literary Criticism, Gale (Detroit, MI), Volume 6, 1976, Volume 23, 1983, Volume 36, 1986.
Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 83: French Novelists since 1960, Gale (Detroit, MI), 1989.
Gascoigne, David, Michel Tournier, Berg (Washington, DC), 1996.
Kochhar-Lindgren, Gray, Narcissus Transformed: The Textual Subject in Psychoanalysis and Literature, Pennsylvania State University Press (University Park, PA), 1993.
Petit, Susan, Michel Tournier's Metaphysical Fictions, Benjamins (Philadelphia, PA), 1991.
Roberts, Martin, Michel Tournier: Bricolage and Cultural Mythology, ANMA Libri (Saratoga, CA), 1994.
St. James Guide to Children's Writers, 5th edition, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 1999.
Tournier, Michel, The Wind Spirit: An Autobiography, Beacon Press (Boston, MA), 1988.
Worton, Michael, editor, Michel Tournier, Longman (New York, NY), 1995.
America, November 13, 1982, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 297.
Antioch Review, summer, 1989, review of The Wind Spirit: An Autobiography, p. 372; winter, 1989, review of The Wind Spirit, p. 108.
Children's Literature, 1990, Susan Petit, "Psychological, Sensual, and Religious Initiation in Tournier's Pierrot ou les secrets de la nuit," p. 87.
CLA Journal, September, 1994, Yves W.A. Clemmen, "Tournier Experiencing the Other," p. 46.
Current Biography, April, 1990, "Tournier, Michel Edouard," p. 52.
Fifty Plus, August, 1981, Maggie Paley, review of Gemini, p. 61.
French Review, April, 2001, Jonathan F. Krell, review of Celebrations: Essais, p. 1058.
French Studies, January, 1993, Emma Wilson, "Tournier, the Body and the Reader," p. 43.
Journal of European Studies, June, 1989, Rachel Edwards, "Myth, Allegory, and Michel Tournier," p. 99; September, 1993.
Journal of Modern Literature, fall-winter, 1989, Philip T. Stevick, review of The Wind Spirit, p. 424.
Kirkus Reviews, May 15, 2002, review of Eleazar, Exodus to the West, p. 705.
Library Journal, July, 1981, review of Gemini, p. 1445; October 15, 1982, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 2006; October 1, 1984, review of The Fetishist, p. 1864; May 15, 1986, Frank Schroth, review of Lucien Clerque: Eros and Thanatos, p. 60; October 1, 1987, Marilyn Gaddis Rose, review of The Golden Droplet (La Goutte d'or), p. 110; January, 1989, Danielle Mihram, review of The Wind Spirit, p. 87.
Literature and Psychology, spring-summer, 1991, Susan Petit, "Varieties of Sexuality in Michel Tournier's Les Meteores," p. 43.
Los Angeles Times Book Review, May 19, 1985, Johnathan Kirsch, review of Friday.
Magpies, September, 1992, review of Vendredi; ou, La Vie sauvage, p. 15.
Merkur, Number 28, 1973, Jean Amery, review of The Ogre.
Nation, June 30, 1984, Paul Berman, review of The Fetishist, p. 809.
National Review, October 15, 1982, D. Keith Mano, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 1290.
New Republic, February 11, 1985, Sven Birkerts, "Ogres and Oracles—Reconsideration: Michel Tournier," and reviews of The Fetishist, Friday, Gemini, and The Ogre, p. 39.
New Statesman, October 2, 1981, Bill Greenwall, review of Gemini, p. 22; November 19, 1982, Lewis Jones, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 27; December 9, 1983, Angela McRobbie, "The Fetishist and Other Stories," p. 25; February 27, 1987, Malcolm Imrie, review of Gilles and Jeanne, p. 30; November 27, 1987, Malcolm Imrie, review of The Golden Droplet, p. 32; January 20, 1989, review of The Wind Spirit, p. 108.
Newsweek, October 4, 1972, Peter Prescott, review of The Ogre.
New Yorker, June 14, 1969, review of Friday; August 10, 1981, review of Gemini, p. 106; July 10, 1989, John Updike, reviews of The Wind Spirit and Gilles and Jeanne, p. 92, and Les Meteores, The Ogre, and The Golden Droplet, p. 93.
New York Review of Books, April 28, 1983, Roger Shattuck, "Why Not the Best? (Michael Tournier)," and reviews of The Four Wise Men, Friday, Gemini, The Ogre, and Le Vent du Paraclet, p. 8; November 8, 1984, John Weightman, review of The Fetishist, p. 25; December 8, 1988, John Weightman, review of The Wind Spirit, p. 43.
New York Times, October 24, 1982, Johnathan Baumbach, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 33; October 24, 1987, Michiko Kakutani, review of The Golden Droplet, p. 13.
New York Times Book Review, June 21, 1981, Robert Shattuck, "Michel Tournier (Letter)," p. 33; October 4, 1981, Salman Rushdie, review of Gemini, p. 12; October 24, 1982, Jonathan Baumbach, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 14; April 22, 1984, Marian Engel, review of The Ogre, p. 22; August 24, 1984, Edwin McDowell, "Odds on U.S. Success of Foreign Authors"; September 9, 1984, Victor Brombert, review of The Fetishist, p. 7; February 10, 1985, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 40; December 1, 1985, C. Gerald Fraser, review of The Fetishist, p. 42; November 1, 1987, Richard Sieburth, review of The Golden Droplet, p. 37.
Publishers Weekly, August 13, 1982, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 66; August 24, 1984, review of The Fetishist, p. 73; September 14, 1984, Herbert R. Lottman, interview with Michel Tournier, p. 149; October 5, 1984, review of The Four Wise Men, p. 90; September 20, 1985, Genevieve Stuttaford, review of Lucien Clerque: Eros and Thanatos, p. 94; August 28, 1987, Sybil Steinberg, review of The Golden Droplet, p. 68; December 4, 1987, Sybil Steinberg, review of Gilles and Jeanne, p. 61; October 21, 1988, Genevieve Stuttaford, review of The Wind Spirit, p. 44; March 25, 2002, review of Eleazar, Exodus to the West, p. 39.
Romantic Review, November, 1989, Josette A. Wisman, "Ideologie chretienne et ideologie nazie: une lecture hermeneutique du Roi des Aulnes, p. 591; March, 1993, David P. Platten, "The Geist in the Machine: Nazism in Tournier's Le Roi des aulnes," p. 181.
Style, fall, 1992, Arlette Bouloumie, "Writing and Modernism: Michel Tournier's Friday," p. 447; spring, 2002, Anthony Purdy, "The Bog Body as Mnemotope: Nationalist Archaeologies in Heaney and Tournier," p. 93.
Thought, March, 1991, Panos D. Alexakos, "Metamorphoses: On the Limits of Thought," p. 5.
Times Literary Supplement, November 5, 1987, review of La Goutte d'or; August 11, 1989, Michael Sheringham, "Le Tabor et le Sinai: Essais sur l'art contemporain," p. 879; August 11, 1989, Michael Sheringham, reviews of The Wind Spirit and Le Medianoche Amoureux, p. 879; February 15, 1991, Marina Warner, review of The Midnight Love Feast, p. 19.
Tribune Books (Chicago, IL), October 25, 1987, review of The Golden Droplet, p. 3.
USA Today, September 14, 1984, review of The Fetishist, p. 3D.
Virginia Quarterly Review, spring, 1988, review of The Golden Droplet, p. 56.
Washington Post Book World, October 28, 1984, Bob Halliday, review of The Fetishist, p. 107; February 10, 1985, review of The Four Wise Men, p. BW12; March 10, 1985, review of Friday, p. BW12.
Wilson Library Bulletin, December, 1994, review of Friday, p. 39.
Yale French Studies, fall, 1988, Christopher Rivers, "Michel Tournier," p. 115.
Complete Review, http://www.complete-review.com/ (December 14, 2005), review of The Mirror of Ideas.