Rimbaud has been better served by writers in English than Verlaine.
A new biography of Arthur Rimbaud, written by Seth Whidden of Queen's College Oxford, a Board member of the Rimbaud and Verlaine Foundation, is being published by Reaktion in May 2018 and will be launched by the Foundation at a special event.
Enid Starkie began publishing works on Rimbaud in the 1930s. Her Arthur Rimbaud – A Biography is still available in paperback, republished by Important Books in 2013 ISBN 8087830571.
Graham Robb’s biography Rimbaud is now the standard work in English. It was first published by Picador in 2000 ISBN 0303482823.
Novelist and critic Edmund White's study Rimbaud – The Double Life of a Rebel was first published in hardback in Great Britain in 2009 by Atlantic Books and is now available in paperback ISBN 1843549727.
Finally, Charles Nicholl’s Somebody Else – Arthur Rimbaud in Africa 1880-91 remains an excellent read. It was published by Vintage in 1998 ISBN 0099767716.
As for Verlaine, Weidenfeld and Nicolson published Joanna Richardson’s biography entitled simply Verlaine in 1971 ISBN 0297003542.
The British scholar Michael Pakenham, who sadly died early in 2013, produced a monumental edition of Verlaine’s Correspondance générale 1857-1885 (in French) published by Fayard in 2005 ISBN 2213619506.
A new biography of Verlaine in English by Yann Frémy is in preparation and is eagerly awaited.
Christopher Hampton’s successful stage play Total Eclipse about Rimbaud and Verlaine’s relationship, originally written in 1967, was made into a successful film in 1995, starring David Thewlis as Verlaine and Leonardo DiCaprio as Rimbaud. The screenplay was published by Faber and Faber in 1995 ISBN 0571178731.
In Journeying Boys, a music theatre piece blending song, movement and drama, the pianist and radio presenter Iain Burnside takes Les Illuminations as his starting point to explore the contrast between the two very different creative personalities of Arthur Rimbaud and Benjamin Britten.
No More Words by Hervé Constant
Collection Musée Arthur Rimbaud Charleville/Mézières France