Conversation with Kenneth White, at home in the French countryside. He discusses his works of poetry, his latest book, and his choice to come live in France.
Kenneth White, a thinker and poet born in 1936, started to open up to the beauty of the natural world during his childhood, in a Scottish environment facing the sea and its large, wild outdoors. He studied literature, philosophy and Latin in Glasgow, and then settled in France. There, he discovered surrealists, Oriental beliefs and primitive cultures. An English lecturer at the Sorbonne, he published his first poems in the Wild Coal collection.
Elected as chair of Sorbonne university's XXth century poetry section, he published philosophical stories and poetry, quite affected by the elements and the many trips he made around the world. In 1989, Kenneth White founded the International Institute of Geopoetics. His idea was to mix poetry, biology, ecology, philosophy and self-analysis. A poetic short story would then be possible, mixing literature and sciences. In 1994, he published Le Plateau de l'Albatros, which drew up the first geopoetic cartography.
In 2005, a prolific author, he published, amongst other things, Le Passage Extérieur (a collection of poems), La Maison des Marées (narrative prose) and L'Ermitage des Brumes (interviews regarding his report on the Orient). Today, he attends many university conferences to express his ideas on "poetic intelligence". In 2006, he published Le Rôdeur des Confins, a work that discusses his discovery of territories all over the world.