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POEMS T H AT S I NG BY F R E NCH M A S T E R S t 73

LEON SCHWARTZ

Leon Schwartz was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1922 and grew up in Bronx, New York, and Providence, Rhode Island, where he became interested in French literature. After World War II, in which he served for three years as an Army Air Force B-17 navigator flying with the 8th Air Force in the European Theater of Operations, he completed a B.A. in French at UCLA, spent a year in France with six months at the Sorbonne, and earned an M.A. and Ph. D. in French at the University of Southern California with minors in English and Spanish. He taught languages in public schools for eight years, before becoming a professor of French at California State University, Los Angeles.

His teaching career at CSULA extended from 1959 to 2003, during which time he specialized in the writers of the French Enlightenment and French poetry in general. Besides his master’s thesis on the translations of the poetry of Arthur Rimbaud and doctoral dissertation on the French writings of Frederick Melchior Grimm, he has published a book on the great French philosopher, encyclopedist, novelist, dramatist, and art critic Denis Diderot, and numerous articles in professional journals on pedagogical issues, the ideas and literary techniques of various 18th century social philosophers, early French feminists, and the 19th-century Romantic poet Gérard de Nerval.

Professor Schwartz is married and has two adult children, one a high school French teacher and the other a noted international lawyer and arbitrator in the Paris office of an American law firm.

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