Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The poetic imagery and existential dilemma of Jean Cocteau
Author: Cocozza, E.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3559 6789
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 1979
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
This thesis is in two parts. In the first I deal with the personal mythology of Cocteau which contributed in great measure to the poetic imagery in his works. After attempting to distinguish the "real" Cocteau from his legendary "persona" by briefly examining aspects of his life and the various influences which impinged upon his artistic development, I proceed to discuss the constituent elements of his personal mythology and try to show how they emerged gradually as a result of his personal and artistic experiences over a long period. In the second part of the thesis I systematically examine the illustrations of his poetic imagery and aesthetic theories in selected works from the literary spheres in which he was prolifically active. Examples are studied from his poetry, his novels, his plays and his works of artistic criticism, which he described as his poesie critique, and I try to demonstrate the inter-dependence of his works in the various media he employed. In this section I also devote a final chapter to his most characteristic works in the cinema, a medium in which he possibly achieves the climax of his artistic aims by the imaginative use of his oneiric imagery to realise, with great versatility, the corporeal expression of his poetry, while simultaneously broadening the artistic dimensions of the art of the film. In examining his works I attempt to demonstrate that his existential dilemma, which he referred to as his malaise perpetuel, involved him in incautiously and sometimes wilfully fostering a false image. Nevertheless, the resulting conflict within him stimulated his oneiric experiences without which he could not have accomplished his poetic mission, an exploration of the mystery he termed la nuit humaine, from which he emerged endowed with a very individualistic morality of freedom opposed entirely to the conventions of social morality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral