Rachilde (1860–1953) By Hawthorne, Melanie
Known mainly for her prose fiction of the Decadent period, the French writer Rachilde contributed to modernist theater in a number of ways. She was an important figure in French symbolist theatres of the 1890s (particularly Paul Fort’s Théâtre d’art and Aurélien Lugné-Poe’s Théâtre de l’oeuvre). She had several of her own plays produced, and came into contact with artist groups such as the Nabis (Paul Gauguin designed the program for her 1891 play Madame La Mort). The Symbolists introduced Scandinavian dramatists such as Henrik Ibsen and August Strindberg to French audiences, and Rachilde’s plays were exported to countries such as Denmark.