“What is my crime?” »: Sylvain Tesson responds to the Poets’ Spring controversy

He breaks the silence and laments the situation. Writer Sylvain Tesson, implicated for his role Godfather of Poets’ Springhe finally spoke on Sunday evening.

“What is my crime and who are the judges?” » he asks France 2. The author of “Snow Panther” is the target of a forum of 1,200 signatories, among which the most famous are the authors Baptiste Beaulieu, Chloé Delaume and Marie Pavlenko. He is accused of representing the “literary extreme right” and transmitting “reactionary ideology”. According to them, the choice of this author to lead the annual event that celebrates poetry “reinforces the trivialization and normalization of the extreme right in the political, cultural and society as a whole”.

Sylvain Tesson lamented that those who question it “have found a word that is the word for absolute conformity and that closes the debate, that is: extreme right”. On the other hand, he is ready to accept the idea of ​​being seen as “outdated, backward, rebellious”. But “French offers such a breeding ground, such a store of words”, that he regrets having reduced it to the “extreme right” rating.

He also expressed his enthusiasm for supporting the Poets’ Spring. He wants to fulfill a double duty: to share his taste for poetry and “to pay tribute to those who came to explain to me when I was 7 years old that Victor Hugo was perhaps better than Mickey”.

“Poetry and literature are freedom”

Criticisms directed at him are “symptoms of an energetic inability to accept that things can be something other than oneself.” Finally, he believes that his detractors are going the wrong way, and the opposite of what he thinks writing should allow. “Poetry and literature (at least that’s what I thought, poor naive) is in fact (…) everything is allowed, (…) things contradict each other, meet each other, collide, oppose each other … It’s called freedom. »

Controversy led to the resignation of the artistic director of the event Sylvain Tesson at the origin of the choice of godfather. Sophie Nauleau. “What I fully support is the choice of Sylvain Tesson as La Grace’s magical godfather (Author’s note: 2024 edition theme, March 9-25) he stirred up an amazing cabal, terrible, terrible to say the least. In this context, without hearing a word, I preferred to keep mine for silence,” he said in a press release sent to the France Presse agency (AFP).

Minister of Culture he expressed his surprise regarding the situation. “I was surprised that poets rejected other poets,” Rachida Dati reacted. “Culture is usually a place where there is no sectarianism. It is curious, the sectarianism, among the people who say they are in favor of openness”, he told the media at the International Comic Festival in Angoulême.

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