François Châteaubriand

Poet

François-René Chateaubriand was one of the foremost French authors of the nineteenth-century and was the first to define the focus on human passions: "One inhabits, with a full heart, an empty world," He thought to achieve this in his personal life by engagement with the world and is considered the initiator of the nineteenth-century genre of travel literature. In his memoirs Chateaubriand described himself as "a traveler, soldier and poet: "It is among forests that I have sung the forest and aboard ships that I have depicted the sea."

"A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between his work and his play; his labor and his leisure; his mind and his body; his education and his recreation. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence through whatever he is doing, and leaves others to determine whether he is working or playing. To himself, he always appears to be doing both."