Écrire la (non-)violence : le cas de Laëtitia ou la fin des hommes d’Ivan Jablonka
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© 2017 Association for the Study of Modern & Contemporary France. This article analyses Ivan Jablonka’s Laëtitia ou la fin des hommes, which garnered three major prizes in the fall of 2016 (Le Prix Littéraire du Monde, Le Médicis et Le Prix des Prix) while also receiving quasi-unanimous acclaim from French press and media. My purpose is to explain how Jablonka’s writing contributes to exposing, denouncing and even, as far as possible ex post facto and by means of a text, undertaking a kind of reparation of the masculine violence inflicted on the 18-year-old young woman not only at the end, but throughout her entire life. To this end, the paradigm of violence laid out by Lévinas and Derrida will allow us to explore the ethics and poetics of non-violence. If on the one hand Jablonka’s text reveals the subjective involvement of the researcher and writer, we will see on the other hand that his project carries social, political and human stakes: his writing of a ‘crime story’ constitutes a manner of understanding the tragedy in the context of French society, with its social, judiciary and political institutions.
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