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City of NoiseSound and Nineteenth-Century Paris$
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Aimée Boutin

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780252039218

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252039218.001.0001

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Listening to the Glazier’s Cry

Listening to the Glazier’s Cry

(p.82) Chapter 4 Listening to the Glazier’s Cry
City of Noise

Aimée Boutin

University of Illinois Press

This chapter draws on a network of discourses including the picturesque and flâneur-writing, panoramic literature on the Cris, and reflections on populist song, in order to show how different writers harmonized the glazier's cry into poetic prose. It compares Arsène Houssaye's “La Chanson du vitrier” and Charles Baudelaire's “Le Mauvais Vitrier”. It shows how Houssaye's transcriptions of the glazier's cry and his use of the cry as refrain relate to efforts by musicians such as Mainzer and Kastner to document the cry for posterity. Houssaye harmonizes the cry to exploit its pathos and, in tandem with Nerval, Gautier, or Dupont, he seeks to achieve an authenticity through the transposition of song. In contrast, Baudelaire espouses dissonance in “Le Mauvais vitrier” and evokes the sinister and demonic effects of strident noise.

Keywords:   Arsène Houssaye, La Chanson du vitrier, Charles Baudelaire, Le Mauvais Vitrier, flânerie, populist song, street noise, glaziers

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