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I'm learning about the literary critic Albert Thibaudet. I read on Wikipedia that he was the co-founder of the Geneva School of literary criticism, but I don't remember my tutor mentioning that about him, nor can I find any confirmation for that elsewhere. Can someone point me to resources that could confirm this?

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The simple answer is that he wasn't. Wikipedia's own article on the Geneva School makes no mention of him, and neither did most sources I consulted.

The reason this error is present seems to be that while Thibaudet did not help found the Geneva School, he helped inspire said school. The source that clarified this was Theoretical Schools and Circles in the Twentieth Century Humanities (see pgs 154 - 156):

In the 1920s, Poulet had devoured the notes on "Bergsonism" by Albert Thibaudet (1847 - 1936), who then taught at Geneva from 1925 to 1936. For Starobinski, Thibaudet's Physiologie de la critique (1930) revealed "the power of fiction" and a skill for critical "sympathy" that merged with "the elan profond of romanticism" (1970, 28-31). [Thibaudet was] part of the prehistory of the "criticism of identification": they thought that the critic should "unite with a creator to recreate"

Clearly Thibaudet was in the right location at the right time, and his writings helped influence some of the major critics in the Geneva School - note that Poulet and Starobinski are Georges Poulet and Jean Starobinski, two of the major founders of the Geneva School - and Thibaudet, according to this, inspired them both.

Another source, Vladimir Nabokov's Lectures on Literature (see page 79) notes that

As a student at the University of Geneva, Jean Rousset took courses with Albert Thibaudet and Marcel Raymond [Thibaudet's successor to his position, who was himself part of the Geneva School], who introduced him to phenomenological literary criticism.

Jean Rousset was yet another of the major founders of the Geneva School. Again, we see Thibaudet in the background as an inspiration. Effectively, Thibaudet was just a little early to be a part of the Geneva School.

  • Thanks so much for your help, I appreciate it. – lmc Jun 18 at 15:51
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    @lmc no problem; glad to be of assistance. – heather Jun 18 at 15:51

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