Everyone knows the anathema that Baudelaire threw on the invention of Daguerre. But there was also Barbey d’Aurevilly, Leon Bloy, Catulle Mendes, Octave Mirbeau, Jules Verne, Emile Zola, etc. Decried and vilified, photography was hated by nineteenth-century writers. This hatred and mistrust did not always take the form of a theoretical article. It is in fiction that the true reception of photography is elaborated. There is the professional photographer, a dark and cunning hero, or a simple pianist. There is the amateur photographer, hero-comic subject par excellence. Or the customer, the pinnacle of human stupidity and narcissism. There is the photographic portrait, endowed with animism, which fertilizes women, captures the soul of the living and the dead, designates the culprit, etc. While now photography is in the museum, it is good to resume the thread of its history under the truculent and critical prism of these authors of time.
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