Complete summary of André Breton’s Manifesto of Surrealism. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of Manifesto of Surrealism. Andre Breton discusses the meaning, aims, and political position of the Surrealist movement. Manifestoes of Surrealism has ratings and 58 reviews. Manifestoes of Surrealism is a book by André Breton, describing the aims, meaning, and political .

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Manifestoes of Surrealism

Because, through his replies, he obtrudes upon the attention of the doctor examining him — and because he is not the person asking the questions. But this was supposed to be a Manifesto, not a rant. Here are two passages by Nerval which seem to me to be bretkn significant in this respect: In what happens to him or might happen, he will perceive only what relates such events to a host of similar events, events in which he has not taken part, waste events.

For now, I think of a castle, of which at least half is not sirrealism in ruins; the castle belongs to me, I picture it in a rural setting not far from Paris.

The movement was not long in bursting in vaults which were hated and excommunicated. It is because man, when he ceases to sleep, is above all the plaything of his memory, and in its normal state memory takes pleasure in weakly retracing for him the circumstances of the dream, in stripping it of any real importance, and in dismissing the only determinant from the point where he thinks he has left it a few hours before: The mind which plunges into surrealism relives with exaltation the best part of its childhood.

They coincide with an eclipse of taste which I am made to endure, I whose idea of taste is a large stain. And since it has not been proved in the slightest that, in doing so, the “reality” with which I am kept busy continues to exist in the state of dream, that it does not sink back down into zndre immemorial, why should I not grant to dreams mnifesto I occasionally refuse reality, that is, this value of certainty in itself which, in its own time, is not open to my repudiation?

Desnos now speaks surrealist at will. Thus the analysis of the mysterious effects and special pleasures it can produce — in many respects Surrealism occurs as a new vice which does not necessarily anre to be restricted to the happy few; like hashish, it has the ability to satisfy all manner of tastes — such an analysis has to be included in the present study.

Poetry teaches him to do so. It is, in fact, very difficult to assess the various elements present at their true value, one might even say it is impossible to appreciate them at first reading.

No matter how charming they may be, a grown man would think he were reverting to childhood by nourishing himself mqnifesto fairy tales, and I am the first to admit that all such tales are not suitable for him.


The world thereupon seems to be like a cryptogram which remains indecipherable only so long as one is not thoroughly familiar with the gymnastics that permit one to pass at will from one piece of apparatus to another. It had seemed to me, and still does — the way in which the phrase about the man cut in two had come to me is an indication of it — that the speed of thought is no greater than the speed of speech, and that thought does not necessarily defy language, nor even the fast-moving pen.

Some may say to me that the parallel is not very encouraging. Out of this will result a plot more or less clever in appearance, justifying point by point this moving or comforting denouement about which you couldn’t care less. And if you die, are you not certain of waking among the dead? Secrets of the Magical Surrealist Art – Written surrealist composition, or first and last draft Have writing materials brought, once you are settled in a place as favourable as possible for focusing the mind on itself.

It falls to him alone to belong to himself completely, that is to maintain the host of his desires, daily more formidable, in a state of anarchy. Your false novel will simulate to a marvelous degree a real novel; you will be rich, and everyone will agree that “you’ve really got a lot of guts,” since it’s also in this region that this something is located. I shall even go so far as to state that it instructs me and, indeed, it has happened on occasions that I have employed surreally words whose meaning I have forgotten.

I could thus depict a tree, a wave, a musical instrument, all manner of things of which I am presently incapable of providing even the roughest sketch. The conjunction is made or not made, that is all.

The best art manifesto I’ve ever read.

After you have settled yourself in a place as favorable as possible to the concentration of your mind upon itself, have writing materials brought to you.

Through surrealism one will surprise despair in all its poverty. One evening then, before falling asleep, I perceived, so clearly articulated that it was impossible to change a word, but distinct however from the sound of any voice, a quite bizarre phrase which came to me without bearing any trace of the events in which, my consciousness agrees, I found myself involved at that time, a phrase which seemed to me insistent, a phrase, dare I say it, that came knocking at the window.

We must give thanks to Freud for his discoveries. Is it not incumbent upon us, who are already living off it, to try and impose what we hold to be our case for further inquiry? It will glove your hand, burying therein the profound M with which the word Memory begins. From childhood memories, and from a few others, there emanates a sentiment of being unintegrated, and then later of having gone astray, which I hold to be the most fertile that exists. Thoughts came to me so rapidly and continued to flow so abundantly that I lost a whole host of delicate details, because my pencil could not keep up with them, and yet I went as fast as I could, my hand in constant motion, I did not lose a minute.


Soupault’s being less static than mine, and, if he does not mind my offering this one slight criticism, from the fact that he had made the error of putting a few words by way of titles at the top of certain pages, I suppose in a spirit of mystification. Surrealism is an unrelenting revolt against a civilization that reduces all human aspiration to market values, religious impostures, universal boredom and misery.

Surrealist Manifesto – Wikipedia

He calls many things stupid, which I also enjoyed. Memory alone arrogates to itself the right to excerpt from dreams, to ignore the transitions, and to depict for us rather a series of dreams than the dream itself. Memory alone arrogates to itself manofesto right to recall excerpts, to ignore transitions, and to represent it to us rather as a series of dreams than the dream itself.

Bought a first Edition! Pure psychic automatism by means of which one intends to express, either verbally, or in writing, or in any other manner, the actual functioning of thought.

Several of his “most respected and honorable” fellow citizens have lodged a complaint against him, and he is also charged with slander and libel.

Breton, Andre (–) – First Manifesto of Surrealism

The ease of everything is priceless. They were instruments too full of pride, and this is why they have not always produced a harmonious sound.

The remarks exchanged are not, as is generally the case, meant to develop some thesis, however unimportant it may be; they are as disaffected as possible.

Nothing can be compared to their vacuity; it is nothing but the superimposition of images from a catalogue, the author employs them more and more readily, he seizes the opportunity to slip me postcards, he tries to make me fall in step with him in public places: From the moment that one has come upon its mode of generation and become conscious of its inexhaustible resources, this extraordinary network of sparks leads the mind to have a less opaque image of the world and of itself.

And ever since I have had a great desire to show forbearance to scientific musing, however unbecoming, in the final analysis, from every point of view. We absolutely ought to get to the bottom of this.