Bloy, Léon (lāôNˈ blwä) [key], 1846–1917, French writer. A Roman Catholic and a social reformer, Bloy wrote violent and vituperative attacks on religious conformism and bitter portraits of his life and friends. His works decry cruelty and injustice, and their fervor made them influential in Europe. They include the autobiographical novels Le Désespéré [the hopeless one] (1886) and La Femme pauvre (1897, tr. The Woman Who Was Poor, 1939); Salut par les Juifs (1892), a tribute to the Jews; and a vast body of correspondence.
See studies by M. R. Brady (1969) and R. Heppenstall (1969).
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