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This is the first full-length study in English of the work of Michel Leiris, a central figure in contemporary French culture. It explores Leiris's participation in some of the most striking intellectual and artistic movements of the twentieth-century: surrealism, ethnography and existentialism. Comparing his writing to the major artistic, political and philosophical concepts of the period, Hand asserts that Leiris's multi-volume autobiography remains as the model form of twentieth century self-inquiry.
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