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At an Anarchist Meeting in the _Mutualit e_

Speech at the Mutualité



Author André Breton
People cited Garry Davis, Gandhi, Jean-Paul Sartre


Manuscript by André Breton dated 13 October 1949 for a speech given the following day at the Mutualité.

Written on 13 October 1949 and intended for a meeting organised for the 14th at the Mutualité, André Breton was unable to deliver this speech in full, as an uproar broke out during it, disrupting the audience, the meeting thus falling very short of what hopes he had for it. Opposed to the idea of conscientious objection being granted legal status (in his view, contradictory to its revolutionary scope), and having reservations about the recent activities of Garry Davis, Breton offended the sensibilities of an audience the majority of which was committed to anarchist ideas. [Atelier André Breton website, 2005]

Autograph manuscript signed, 13 October 1949. 

- 5 pages in-4° handwritten in blue ink, folioed, dated, and signed by Breton, of a speech delivered at the Mutualité in which he praised the anarchist movement, at the same time as his appraisal of Garry Davis became increasingly reserved: 

"I will never forget the peace and exaltation I felt as a child on one of the very first times that I was taken to a cemetery - amidst so many depressing or ridiculous funerary monuments - the discovery of a simple granite slab engraved in red capitals with the splendid motto: Neither God, Nor Master. 

"What do we see now? We see Garry Davis wearing a bomber jacket (in my opinion a somewhat poorly chosen outfit), described by the press as ‘legendary’, unrolling his sleeping bag in front of the Cherche-Midi, brought to the police station, each occasion repeated with a greater number of newspapers publishing his photograph.” [Sale Catalogue, 2003]

Exhibition: La Maison de verre: André Breton, initiateur découvreur, Musée Henri-Martin, Cahors, 20 September - 31 December 2014.



- André Breton (Édition de Marguerite Bonnet avec la collaboration de Philippe Bernier, Marie-Claire Dumas, Étienne-Alain Hubert et José Pierre), « Discours à la Mutualité », Alentours II, ŒŒuvres complètes, tome III, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade, Paris, Gallimard, 1999, p. 995-1002.


Creation date13 oct. 49
Bibliographical material

5 pages in-4°

MS in blue ink

Number of pages5 p.
Breton Auction, 2003Lot 2309
Keywords, , , ,
CategoriesManuscripts, Andre Breton's Manuscripts
Set[AB's Manuscripts] Miscellaneous Manuscripts
ExhibitionsMeeting anarchiste de la mutualité , André Breton, The House Of Glass
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