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Sorana Gurian (Gurfinckel)


GURIAN (Gurfinckel), SORANA (1913–1956), Romanian novelist and journalist who later wrote in French. Sorana Gurian was born in Komrat, Bessarabia. After her university studies she spent three years in France, then returned to Bucharest on the eve of World War II and joined the anti-Fascist underground. After the war she became a journalist, but in 1947 her article calling for freedom of expression led to the suppression of her work. Early in 1949 she escaped from Romania and settled in Paris. Except for a two-year stay in Israel (1949–51), she spent the rest of her life in France, where she quickly established herself as a newspaper and radio political commentator as well as an author. Sorana Gurian's first novel, which made her famous, Zilele nu se întorc niciodată ("Never Do the Days Return," 1946), was the largely autobiographical story of an intellectual family in a Bessarabian town. Intâmplări dintre amurg şi noapte ("Events Between Dawn and Night," 1946), a collection of stories, dealt with the sexual obsessions of lonely women. Her first book in French, Les mailles du filet (1950), a diary of the years 1947–49, had a factual authenticity which made it an important political document. She translated her first Romanian novel as Les jours ne reviennent jamais (1952), and wrote a sequel to it: Les amours impitoyables, which appeared in 1953, and which dealt with the political scene in pre-World War II Romania. Her last book, Récit d'un combat (1956), a record of her desperate search for treatment of the cancer from which she was dying, was enlivened by her thirst for life, her courage, and the support of her friends.

Sources:C. Malraux, in: Evidences (Oct. 8, 1956), 48–49; G. Marcel, in: Arts et Spectacles (Feb.–March, 1956); Manès Sperber, in: Preuves (Feb. 1956), 45–46; Dicţionarul scriitorilor români, D-L (1998), 472–73; V. Durnea, in: România literară (2003), 20–21.

[Dora Litani-Littman]

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