Manual of Saint Germain-Des-Pres by Boris Vian
8vo. pp. 190. profusely illustrated. paperback (fine condition). New York: Rizzoli, .
ISBN-10: 0847826589 / ISBN-13: 978-0847826582
The Manual of St-Germain-des-Prés is a “guide” to the legendary creative and intellectual playground of mid-20th-century Paris. With boundless energy and a delicious sense of humor, Boris Vian takes readers on a star-studded romp through the underground culture of jazz clubs, Left Bank cafés, surrealist and existentialist literature, and the various eccentrics and artists that made up this legendary scene.
Paris in the ‘50s was an incredible place and time: With the end of the war, everything seemed possible. The list of luminaries Vian ran with, and who are captured here in previously unpublished photographs, includes Simone de Beauvoir, Albert Camus, Juliette Gréco, Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Jean-Paul Sartre, Jean Genet, Jacques Prévert, and Jean Cocteau.
“Vian has been canonized by a whole generation of revolutionary young people…this fantasy of perishing purity is an affirmation of youth and innocence, laced with the biting humor of Jacques Prévert and Ionesco.”