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Anatol France

(1844 - 1924)

Anatole France, born François-Anatole Thibault, was a French poet, journalist, and novelist, celebrated for his ironic and skeptical approach to life. He was a leading figure of French literature in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1921. France's works reflect his profound knowledge of French history and society, combined with a deep humanist concern and a distinctive wit that critiques the political and social norms of his time.

Raised in Paris, France was the son of a bookseller, which provided him with a rich literary environment from a young age. His early works favored poetry, but it was his prose—novels, tales, and autobiographical stories—that solidified his reputation. "The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard" (1881), his first novel, unveiled his sophisticated style and storytelling prowess. France often delved into themes of skepticism, the folly of human endeavors, and the injustices of society, as evident in "Thaïs" (1890) and "The Gods Are Athirst" (1912).

As an editor at the prestigious literary journal "Le Temps" and through his involvement in several prominent political cases, France became a prominent public intellectual and advocate for social justice. His sharp criticism of the French establishment and his active support for the wrongly accused Alfred Dreyfus during the Dreyfus Affair showcased his commitment to principles over nationalism.

Anatole France's distinguished career and sophisticated oeuvre continue to influence writers and thinkers, leaving a vivid imprint on the landscape of modern literature.

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