Talks | The Art of Letters in Francophone Literature

The Art of Letters in Francophone Literature

Event Information

Thursday, Mar 6, 2014
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

At The French Cultural Center
Map/Directions

Member Price: $10.00
Non-Member Price: $15.00
RSVP Required (call 617-912-0400)

This event is presented in French.

Students with valid school ID: $10.00

Payment is required at time of reservation.

Event Description

What is it that's making French and Francophone writers employ the letter as a literary device? Since 2000, epistolary fiction has made something of a comeback, even as letters themselves are being written less and less. Considering the ties that have always existed between letters and women in literature, there are certain questions that need to be asked. Is a letter inserted into a novel a way for women to be heard differently? In this time of globalization where more and more women are on the move, is the letter a virtual space where one can re-enact oneself, act and react?

By focusing on the works of well established, multicultural authors such as the Senegalese author Ken Bugul, Marie NDiaye - a French author with West African ancestry - and Pascale Roze, who was born in Indochina but has since lived in France – Frédérique Donovan’s book Epistolarity, Theatricality and Women in the Works of Ken Bugul, Marie Ndiaye and Pascale Roze tries to answer these questions.

In this presentation, the author will provide excerpts of innovative uses of letters from As seen from the other side / Au-dela du regard (2004) by Ken Bugul, Self-Portrait in Green / Autoportrait en vert (2005) by Marie NDiaye, and Summer Letter / Lettre d'été (2000), a novel by Pascale Roze.

Reception to follow the book talk.

About Frédérique Donovan

After studying dramatic arts (Cours Simon) and French and Francophone literature (Paris IV-Sorbonne, Boston University), Frédérique Donovan taught French literature and cinema at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She currently teaches at Brandeis University. Her research is centered on the impact of migration on contemporary literature. She has given several lectures and written articles on this topic, most notably for the publications Contemporary French and Francophone Studies and The French Review.

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