Date of Degree

9-2022

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Program

French

Advisor

Maxime Blanchard

Committee Members

Francesca Sautman

Sam Di Iorio

Subject Categories

French and Francophone Literature

Keywords

Filiation narrative, immigration, memory, hybrid memoir, archive

Abstract

This thesis offers a critical reading of three French narratives: Dalila Kerchouche’s Mon père, ce harki (2003), Colombe Schneck’s Les guerres de mon père (2018), and Martine Storti’s L’arrivée de mon père en France (2008). These works combine representations of familial history with the explorations of personal and collective traumas or repression. The study addresses the following dimensions of the texts: 1) The catalyst of intergenerational silence behind these and many other similar works; 2) The textual interplay between storytelling and material evidence; 3) The ways in which the authors combine narratives of familial hardships on one hand, and of socioeconomic or racial oppression inflicted on marginalized subjects on the other.

The findings presented here hope to contribute to the study of filiation narratives, an emerging genre still in need of delineation, and to introduce the genre to an anglophone audience. In addition, this dissertation ultimately addresses what role literature can play in understanding history and societal injustices.

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