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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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“Cry Louder, Street Crier”

“Cry Louder, Street Crier”

Peddling Poetry and the Avant-Garde

(p.105) Chapter 5 “Cry Louder, Street Crier”
City of Noise

Aimée Boutin

University of Illinois Press

This chapter follows representations of peddlers from Baudelaire to François Coppée, Charles Cros, and Jean Richepin, and finally to symbolists such as Stéphane Mallarmé and Joris Karl Huysmans. It considers whether they perceived the city-as-concert as harmonious or dissonant by analyzing the extent to which their poems reflect or inflect the discourse on the picturesque. Poetry about peddlers incorporates the vitality of street noise, the formal experimentation of popular song, and the aural acuity of flâneur-writing into the art of the establishment or the avant-garde. Such mixing of high and low registers is especially salient when Mallarmé's Chansons bas are read alongside Jean-François Raffaëlli's illustrations of types in the tradition of the Cris de Paris. The parodic poetry of Cros and Richepin, written in reaction to Coppée's moralizing sentimental dizain, in a way sets the stage for Mallarmé's “lowly songs.”

Keywords:   Paris, peddlers, street noise, Charles Baudelaire, François Coppée, Charles Cros, Jean Richepin, Stéphane Mallarmé, Joris Karl Huysmans, poetry

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