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Born in 1919 / Died in 1998 / France / French


1919 March 28th: the birth in Odessa, Russia of Anatole BISK (occasionally BISQUE), son of Alexandre and Berthe Turiansky. His paternal ancestors, originally from Alsace and Belgium, established themselves in the Ukraine in the middle of the nineteenth century to work in railroad construction there. His father was a manufacturer, but also a poet. It was he who first translated Rainer Maria Rilke into Russian.
1920: The family, in reduced circumstances, moves to Varna, Bulgaria, on the shores of the Black Sea. His father lives off translations; his mother gives violin lessons.
1923: Alexandre Bisk becomes a bank employee in Sofia. He branches out into the stamp-collecting trade.
1925: Move to Brusselss. Little Anatole attends various primary schools.
1932-38: Secondary studies at the Atheneum in Uccle.
1938: Studies in Romance philology at the free University of Brussels. Founding of a first literary review with José-André Lacour, then Jean Mogin: Pylône. This review, which ran for only five issues, was noticed by Charles Plisnier and Robert Poulet.
1940: Mobilized May 10th, Anatole Bisk participates in the Belgian army campaign. At its surrender, at his own request, he joins the French army. After the armistice, he stays for a time near Montpellier.
1942: Lengthy travels lead him to New York where he becomes sub-editor of the newspaper of Free France, La Voix de France. With Yvan Goll, He founds a literary review, Hémisphères. His stay in the United States is also the occasion for important encounters : Maurice Maeterlinck, Jules Romains, Thomas Mann... He becomes a familiar of André Breton, by whom he is published in VVV. Roger Caillois proposes his poems to Lettres françaises, in Buenos Aires.
1943: New enlistment, in the American army this time. He serves in Texas, in California and in Maryland, then, in December, is sent to Northern Ireland.
1944: Work in London in Eisenhower's headquarters. He lands in Normandy, the is posted to the H.Q. at Versailles.
1945: Liaison officer and functionary of the Council of Allied Control in Berlin.
1947: Still in Berlin, he founds a review in German, Das Lot, which will be published until 1952.
1948: Is promoted to Joint Director of Allied Liaisons and of Protocol.
1951: Moves permanently to Paris et takes up his studies at the Sorbonne .
1953: Finishes his education and decides to devote himself to letters. Thus begins a series of important collaborations in Combat (the newspaper of Albert Camus), in the Monde, in the Nouvelles littéraires, in Figaro; later on in the Nouvelle Revue française and in Quotidien de Paris.
1959: Teaches French literature in various American universities: Brandeis University, UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee; then, for three years, occupies the chair of American studies at the University of Lyon. Reader for several publishing houses, editor of numerous collections of poetry, producer and commentator for the O.R.T.F.
1980: Naturalized as a French citizen, Alain Bosquet founds the review of internationalliterature Nota Bene.
1987: Election to the Belgian Royal Academy of French Language and Literature.
1993: Election to the Academy of Letters of Québec. President of the Académie Mallarmé.
1998: Dies in Paris, age 77.