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    Time travelling in Ernaux's Memoire de Fille

    Kawakami, Akane (2019) Time travelling in Ernaux's Memoire de Fille. French Studies 73 (2), ISSN 0016-1128.

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    This article is a close reading of Ernaux’s latest book, Mémoire de fille (2016). Following Les Années (2008), generally perceived to be her masterpiece although atypical of her work because it is written in the third person, Mémoire de fille seems at first sight to be a return to the first-person voice as well as to a narrower and more personal focus. Upon closer inspection, however, it becomes clear – as I show in the article – that in her latest work Ernaux goes further than ever before in her attempts to travel back through time into her past selves, including one almost physical ‘return’ to the past through photography which rivals Proust’s experiments with his madeleine. The article shows how this work contains some of Ernaux’s most self-reflexive and theorized ideas about time – lived, imaginary, reading and writing time – although these are always offered in the context of her autobiographical project. I also show how, again like Proust, Ernaux’s experiments with time in Mémoire de fille are crucial to her formation as a writer, as a writing self.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication following peer review. The version of record is available online at the link above.
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): contemporary French literature; Annie Ernaux; memory; self; photography; Proust
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication
    Depositing User: Akane Kawakami
    Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2018 09:33
    Last Modified: 09 Aug 2023 12:44


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