Writer Dominique Lapierre, author of “The City of Joy”, is dead

Best-selling French author Dominique Lapierre is dead at 91 on the Côte d’Azur, announced his widow, Sunday, December 4, in the regional daily Var-Morning. “He died of old age”explained Dominique Conchon-Lapierre, confident in this interview “in peace and quiet because Dominique is no longer suffering”.

Dominique Lapierre has lived in Ramatuelle (Var), near Saint-Tropez, for sixty years. A house separated by a tennis court has long been occupied by American Larry Collins (died 2005), to whom he wrote in 1964. Is Paris on fire?based on thousands of testimonies after a three-year investigation.

This account of the Liberation of Paris, on August 25, 1944, will be read by 20 million readers in thirty international editions and brought to the cinema in 1966 by René Clément, with many stars, such as the Frenchman Jean-Paul Belmondo or the American Kirk Douglas. Americans Francis Ford Coppola and Gore Vidal co-wrote the screenplay.

Also read: Articles are reserved for our subscribers “O Jerusalem!”, by Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins

Then Is Paris on fire?he continued his fruitful collaboration with Collins: where you mourn me (1968), about the bullfighter El Cordobes; O Jerusalem (1972); Tonight freedom (1975), dealing with Indian independence; The Fifth Horseman (1980), a fiction about an atomic bomb; and the thriller Is New York on fire? (2004). In total, he sold with his “pen brother” in America about 50 million copies of their six novels.

An Indian lover

Dominique Lapierre is a successful writer as well as a philanthropist who is passionate about India. In the early 1980s, he arrived with his wife at Mother Teresa’s in Calcutta. He begins by giving her $50,000, saying: “This is a drop in the ocean of needs. » The nun (who died in 1997 and was canonized by Pope Francis in 2016) replied: “If nothing [ces gouttes d’eau], the ocean will not be an ocean. »

He published in 1985 The City of Joy, written alone, about a slum in Calcutta. The novel, which sold twelve million copies, became the subject of a film directed by Roland Joffé in 1992.

The writer then gave several million dollars to programs to fight leprosy, cholera or tuberculosis, for the construction of housing or the distribution of microcredits.

In 2005 he ensured that, through its copyrights, donations from readers and profits from lectures delivered around the world, its humanitarian work “Made it possible to cure one million tuberculosis patients in twenty-four years, treat 9,000 leprosy children, build 540 drinking water wells and equip four hospital ships in the Ganges delta, in India ”.

“Fight these injustices you denounce”

Among other initiatives, Dominique Lapierre, who speaks Bengali fluently, opened several schools in the region. Part of their funding came from the 2006 auction for $825,000 of a dress worn by actress Audrey Hepburn in the film. Diamonds on the couch (1961), which she received as a gift from fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy.

“It’s not enough to be a best-selling author, you have to fight against these injustices that you denounce in your books”, said this energetic adventurer. In 2008, he received the Padma Bhushan medal awarded by the government of India for his action against poverty.

Also read: Dominique Lapierre, humanitarian writer

Dominique Lapierre also co-wrote, along with Spaniard Javier Moro, It’s five past midnight in Bhopal (2001) and, with Jean-Pierre Pedrazzini, Once upon a time in the USSR (2005).

Born on July 30, 1931 in Châtelaillon (Charente-Maritime) to a diplomat father and a journalist mother, the writer was also a journalist in the 1950s for Compatible with Paris, allowing him to travel to the planet’s hot spots. He has been a resident of an Ehpad (accommodation establishment for dependent elderly people) in the town of Sainte-Maxime for several years, according to Var-Morning.

The World with AFP

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *