Panels MLA

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Female-Authored Life Writing and Scandal
Natalie Edwards, University of Adelaide

1. « Scandalous Memory: Terrorism Testimonial from the Algerian War, » Amy L. Hubbell, University of Queensland
2. « Questioning Accountability in Contemporary Writing: Marcela Iacub’s Investigative Journalism and Its Backlash, » Eftihia Mihelakis, Université de Montréal; Ania Wroblewski, Université du Québec à Montréal
3. « Risques et récompenses: Camille Laurens, Chantal Chawaf, » Karin Schwerdtner, University of Western Ontario

The French literary sphere has recently been marked by scandals, accusations and lawsuits.  Christine Angot was found guilty of ‘atteinte à la vie privée’ and fined 40,000 Euros for basing characters of Les Petits on identifiable people.  Camille Laurens was accused of the same crime by her ex-partner over L’amour, roman, which includes characters whose first names correspond to those of the real-life (ex-)couple.  Marcela Iacub’s Belle et bête—replete with a caricature of a pig on the front cover—portrayed the author’s former lover, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, as a man of rapacious sexual appetite and dubious moral values and earned Iacub a fine of 50,000 Euros. Camille Laurens caused further scandal by accusing Marie Darrieussecq of plagiarism over Philippe.
This phenomenon calls into question the commercial success of life writing, and particularly that of autofiction, a label that may be applied to most of the texts at the heart of these scandals.  Moreover, while men have been involved in many such scandals (Patrick Poivre d’Arvor, Lionel Duroy and filmmaker Arnaud Desplechin were also sued, for example), many of the authors involved are female.  This panel will study the scandals that texts of life writing have engendered, seeking to understand the place of the law in life writing, the limitations that such scandals place upon autofiction, the specificities of ‘atteinte à la vie privée’, the messages that such scandals send to the public, to writers and to the publishing industry, and to the crucial category of gender.

French and Francophone Feminism(s)
Heidi Bostic, Baylor University

1. « International Feminisms in a French Frame: Global Francophone Women Writers, » Alison Rice, University of Notre Dame
2. « Current Metafeminist Practices in France and Québec, » Marie J. Carrière, University of Alberta
3. « Beards and Breasts: The Performative Protest Politics of La Barbe and Femen, » Michèle Schaal, Iowa State University
4. « ‘New Radicals’: Postfeminism, Queer, and French Women Writers of the 2000s, » Mercédès Baillargeon, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Voyages de femmes, entrepris et rapportés: Représentations littéraires et/ou artistiques
Christine M. Probes, University of South FloridaSpeakers:
Linda Alcott, University of Colorado, Denver
Arline E. Cravens, Washington University in St. Louis
Hélène Diaz Brown, Principia College
Molly Krueger Enz, South Dakota State University
Perry J. Gethner, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater
Mariève Maréchal, Uniersity of Ottawa
Catherine R. Montfort, Santa Clara University

Périodes charnières dans les vies de femmes
Florence Ramond Jurney, Gettysburg College

1. « Ne pas être mère: Le choix bien réfléchi de Linda Lê, » Valérie Dusaillant-Fernandes, University of Waterloo
2. « Reluctant Benefactor: The Betrayal of Heritage in Catherine Mavrikakis’s Ça va aller, » Robert Sapp, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
3. « Growing Old and Realizing Life in Marie-Claire Blais’s Soifs Cycle, » Karen McPherson, University of Oregon

Joint WIF/Simone de Beauvoir Society session: The Influence of Simone de Beauvoir’s Writings on Following Generations of French Women Writers
Barbara Klaw, Northern Kentucky University

1. « The Influence of Simone de Beauvoir’s Writings on Claire Cayron: A Preliminary Journey through Their Correspondence, » Alice Caffarel-Cayron, University of Sydney
2. « Becoming the Female Subject: Metamorphosis of the ‘Cochonne’ in Darrieussecq’s Truismes, » Michaela Hulstyn, Stanford University
3. « Jovette Marchessault, héritière moderne de Simone de Beauvoir et/ou utopiste? » Sylvie Pascale Dewey, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania
4. « Simone de Beauvoir et l’écriture des femmes engagées au XXIème siècle, » Nathalie A. Debrauwere-Miller, Vanderbilt University

Special Session: French Women Writers in the Wake of the New Novel: Literary Heirs of Sarraute and Duras
Stephanie A. Schechner, Widener University

1. « Bad Mother(land)s in Marguerite Duras’s and Paule Constant’s Fiction, » Jennifer Willging, Ohio State University, Columbus
2. « Outside and Journal du dehors: Marguerite Duras and Annie Ernaux, » Cathy Jellenik, Hendrix College
3. « Fluid Prose: Mireille Best Writing in the Wake of Nathalie Sarraute, » Stephanie A. Schechner, Widener University

La force des femmes: Sources of Strength for Women in French-Language Literature and Film
Alison Rice, University of Notre Dame

1. « L’amitié entre femmes comme source de force dans la fiction des romancières des lumières, » Isabelle Tremblay, Collège Militaire Royal du Canada
2. « The Force of Music in George Sand: A Path to Empowerment, » Arline E. Cravens, Saint Louis University.
3. « ‘Elles étaient cinq’; or, How Female Friendship Survives Trauma, » Miléna Santoro, Georgetown University.
4. « Anna Gavalda’s Fragile Women: The Empowerment of Self-Sacrifice, » Vera Klekovkina, Scripps College.