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Michel Zevaco

Michel Zevaco

French writer
The basics
Occupations Writer Journalist Novelist
Countries France
Gender male
Birth February 1, 1860 (Ajaccio)
Death August 8, 1918 (Eaubonne)
Authority IMDB id ISNI id Openlibrary id VIAF id
The details

Michel Zevaco (also written as Zévaco) (1 February 1860, Ajaccio - 8 August 1918, Eaubonne) was a French journalist, novelist, publisher, film director, and anti-clerical as well as anarchist activist.
Michel Zevaco founded the anarchist weekly magazine Gueux (French, Beggars) on 27 March 1892. A month later he was jailed for 6 months and fined for praising Pini and Ravachol. Afterwards he wrote for Sébastien Faure's journal, Libertaire, as well as for the anarchist newspaper La Renaissance. In 1898, he edited l'Anticlérical, for the Anticlerical League of France and was involved in supporting Alfred Dreyfus during the eponymous Dreyfus Affair.
Zevaco's famous cloak and dagger novels, Les Pardaillan, began to be serialized in the daily newspapers in 1900 to great popular success. Yet he is today quite unknown, in spite of the new interest aroused by popular literature.
A former school teacher, then an officer, he became a militant journalist, who wrote for various revolutionary newspapers, of anarchist tendency. He became famous mainly for the part he played in the anti-clerical struggles at the end of the 19th century. Then, as a writer of serial novels, he published works which had a great success in Jean Jaurès' daily La Petite République, and he became appointed serial writer for Le Matin from 1906 to his death.
His already well-established popularity was made even greater by his promising beginnings as a film-director in 1917. His novels first published by Fayard and Tallandier were republished several times and adapted for the screen; the latest paperback edition only gives a mutilated version, and is impaired by many cuts.
He is remembered as the author of Les Pardaillan, Le Capitan, Le Pont des soupirs (Bridge of Sighs), Borgia, Buridan, L'Héroïne, l'Hôtel Saint Pol and Nostradamus, his most famous historical novels, but also published novels related to his times. Some of his serials have not yet been published.
In the 1960s, many of Zevaco's historical novels were translated to Hebrew and published with considerable success by the M. Mizrahi (מ. מזרחי) publishing house in Tel Aviv מ. מזרחי. The 1963 translation of Le Capitan was by Yehoshua Kenaz, a well-known Israeli writer. However, these Hebrew translations are long out of print, and Zevaco is virtually unknown to later generations of Hebrew readers.
Zevaco is well known in Turkey; his most important books have been translated and published in Turkish. Borgia was translated in 1909 into Ottoman language, and printed by Hilal Matbaası. The Les Pardaillan series have appeared in many different editions, printed by Şems Matbaası in 1910s, by İNKİLAP VE AKA in 1940s, by GÜVEN BASIM VE YAYINEVİ in 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, by Baskan and Oluş in 1970s. There are two new translations after 2000.


Several of his novels have been adapted for film and television. Films include Captain Blood (1960), based on Le Capitan, and The Avenger of Venice (1964), based on Le Pont des soupirs.

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