Death of Michel Schneider, the man who loved books

Death of Michel Schneider, the man who loved books

Michel Schneider, writer and psychoanalyst, died on July 22, 2022, at the age of 78. AFP/Joel Saget

The writer and psychoanalyst died this Friday, July 22, at the age of 78. He was the father of journalist Vanessa Schneider and the uncle of actress Maria Schneider, the partner of Marlon Brando in The Last Tango in Paris.

Senior civil servant, essayist, novelist, former director of music and dance at the Ministry of Culture, Michel Schneider left a unique and protean body of work, in which he had painted numerous portraits of personalities. The writer and psychoanalyst died this Friday, July 22, at the age of 78.

This music lover had thus, in the 1980s, brilliantly paid tribute to the Canadian pianist Glenn Gould, as well as to the romantic Robert Schumann, then to Marcel Proust, on several occasions, notably in Momessay published in 1999, centered on the relations of the author of‘In Search of Lost Time, with his mother. As for his book on Marilyn Monroe, awarded the Interallié prize in 2006 (Marilyn, last session), it has since joined the classics devoted to the Hollywood star, alongside works by Norman Mailer, Norman Rosten and Joyce Carol Oates. We also owe him a study on plagiarism, word thiefand another on Jacques Lacan.

Haunted by the great figures and writers of the past, this literary critic who had lent his pen to Pointhad published imaginary deadcrowned by the Prix Médicis Essai in 2003. A work in which he had recorded “imaginary deaths of real writers“, specifying : “I open the curtain at the moment when La commedia è finita, which is not necessarily a bad thing, if I believe several of these dying people, wide-eyed before the marvel of a rustling dress: then, life appears to them brand new. Passed by in particular Pascal, Kant, Flaubert, Rilke, Zweig and Buzzati.

“Books and women”

Of his three novels, like a shadowpublished in 2001, is undoubtedly the one that has most marked his readers, through a moving family and filial story in which he paid homage to his older brother, Bertrand, who died prematurely against the backdrop of the Algerian war.
His last book published, in 2021, was entitled books and women . An autobiographical and scholarly story, through his numerous readings, his romantic encounters, and the universe of his library. Michel Schneider liked to say: “To read is to stop dying, and to die is to stop reading.He was the father of novelist Vanessa Schneider, and the uncle of actress Maria Schneider.


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