Download Annie Ernaux: The Return to Origins (Liverpool University by Siobhan McIlvanney PDF

By Siobhan McIlvanney

During this first severe learn in English to concentration completely on Annie Ernaux’s writing trajectory, Siobh?n McIlvanney presents a stimulating and demanding research of Ernaux’s person texts. Following a generally feminist hermeneutic, this research engages in a chain of provocative shut readings of Ernaux’s works in a circulate to spotlight the contradictions and nuances in her writing, and to illustrate the highbrow intricacies of her literary venture. via so doing, it seeks to introduce new readers to Ernaux’s works, whereas enticing on much less everyday terrain these already accustomed to her writing.

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Additional resources for Annie Ernaux: The Return to Origins (Liverpool University Press - Modern French Writers)

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P65 43 04/06/01, 14:20 44 Annie Ernaux: The Return to Origins Apart from her relationship with Alberte, female friendship has no intrinsic value for the narrator, but merely represents a means of meeting potential sexual partners.

The narrator’s intense interest in sexual matters is further highlighted by her imaginary transformations of ordinary events into utopian opportunities to satisfy her sexual curiosity – opportunities which always involve young men and tend to take place in an adult-free zone – and by her fascination with urinary functions (see, for example, pp. 42, 46, 48, 56). ’ (LAV, p. 57) – or teachers at school: ‘la vieille Aubin […] regardait sous les tables à cause des mains …’ (LAV, p. 58). This overriding focus on sexuality which permeates the text from the narrator’s earliest childhood to her young adulthood can be attributed to the abortion she is undergoing in the present, to the sexual origins of her current suffering.

In Lacanian terms, the advent of the Symbolic leads to the devaluation of the Semiotic: ‘quand on est gosse on n’écoute pas les paroles, à peine si on les entend, juste un fond’ (CDR, p. 77). p65 40 04/06/01, 14:20 The Early Years 41 voice provides security for the young child and a sense of pre-individualised fusion, as the narrator matures the content of her mother’s speech becomes all-important; the increasing disjunction between that content and the narrator’s own experiences and perceptions – a disjunction intensified by the narrator’s continuing absorption of middle-class values – serves to reinforce the daughter’s separation from the mother: ‘Tout est désordre en moi, ça colle pas avec ce qu’ils disent’ (CDR, p.

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