Donogoo-Tonka or the Miracles of Science

A Cinematographic Tale

Jules Romains

     5.5 × 8.5 in (14.0 × 21.6 cm)
Hardcover
136 pages
20 color illustrations, 20 b/w illustrations
Publication date: 3/1/2009
Rights: World
ISBN: 9781568987804


Donogoo-Tonka or The Miracles of Science: A Cinematographic Tale is a mock film scenario written by the French novelist Jules Romains. It was first published in book form in 1920, and has never been translated into English. The satirical plot concerns a famous geographer whose academic career is about to be derailed by the revelation that he has invented a city in South America. Through a hilarious sequence of events, a suicidal young man finds a new mission in life by undertaking to found the fictional city, thereby redeeming the error and reputation of the absentminded professor.


Jules Romains, 1885-1972, is the pseudonym of Louis Farigoule, a French novelist, dramatist, and poet. Romains was the founder of Unanimism, a social-literary theory that posited a collective spirit or personality within society. This concept pervades an early collection of his poems, La Vie unanime (1908), as well as his principal work, the twenty-seven-volume novel cycle, Men of Good Will (1932-46), which gives an intricate and panoramic view of French life from 1908 to 1933 with no central figure but a huge cast of characters. His plays include a different version of Donogoo Tonka (also untranslated) and the satirical farce Knock; ou, Le Triomphe de la medecine (1923; translated as Doctor Knock), concerning the power of medical doctors to strain human credulity. Both were made into films. In 1946 he was elected to the Academie Francaise.


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