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Looking Beyond the Political in Driss Chraïbi's Le Passé simple and Kamel Daoud's Meursault, contre-enquête

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Recent years have seen an aesthetic turn in postcolonial literary studies. There has been a widespread call for a move away from over-emphasis on the political context and content of postcolonial literary texts, because this leads to a reductive mining of these for political opinion. Instead, critics advocate a greater engagement with their literariness, with their different generic forms and poetic styles. It can be difficult, however, to look beyond any political comment such texts might be making on account of the politically charged contexts from which they emerge, particularly if their authors publicly express strong political views. This study looks at two novels that have strong political overtones, and that are written by politically outspoken authors and narrated in the first person by politically opiniated narrators; Driss Chraïbi's Le Passé simple (1954) and Kamel Daoud's Meursault, contre-enquête (2013). I will look at the possibilities of reading each text as a comment on literary practice that carries significance beyond its political setting.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 2, 2017

More about this publication?
  • The Irish Journal of French Studies is an annual international refereed journal published by the Association des Études Françaises et Francophones d'Irlande. Articles in English, French or Irish are welcomed on any aspect of research in the area of French and Francophone culture, society, literature and thought. Articles published within the last two years are available free online to members and may be purchased by non-members. All other articles are available on an open access basis.

    Please note that the Print ISSN listed for the journal on this website applies to volumes 1 to 10, and part of volume 16. All other volumes are published, in their entirety, on-line only.

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