Aragon, Louis (1897–1982) By Svendsen, Christina
French author Louis Aragon was a member of the surrealist movement until he split with André Breton and began to devote more of his energy to the Communist Party. He is best known for his love poetry and his novel, Paris Peasant. Educated as a physician, Aragon joined the army medical corps and met André Breton there. The two joined Dada in 1919 and became founding members of the surrealist movement along with Philippe Soupault in 1924. Aragon’s first two poetry collections were highly surrealist in style, but he was criticized by the group after he published Le Paysan de Paris [Paris Peasant], a novel and dialectical meditation on areas of Paris about to be destroyed by modernization. This book deeply influenced the German philosopher Walter Benjamin. Soon after he joined the French Communist Party in 1927, Aragon was ejected from the surrealist movement.