Birth of Joris-Karl Huysmans

Joris Karl Huysmans (1848-1907) is born in Paris to a French mother and Dutch father. 

In addition to serving many decades in the Ministry of the Interior, Huysman was a prolific novelist. His early work was associated with the naturalist movement, but the subject matter and style would shift into decadence. 

Thematically, Huysmans work was highly autobiographical, involving the protracted spiritual struggle of a central protagonist. His most well-known work, A Rebours, revolves around a single character's descent into total decadence. Escapism is a central component of these works, as his characters reject the material world in pursuit of meaning through debauchery. This comes to a head in L'Oblat, where Huysmans rejects escapism through the protagonist, recognizing it as futile.

Huysmans was also an art critic and an early advocate for the French Impressionist movement.

Associated Place(s)

Event date:

The start of the month Feb 1848