By Oliver Davis
This wide-ranging research seems to be at how the aging approach has alternately been figured in and excluded from twentieth-century French literature, philosophy and psychoanalysis. It espouses a serious interdisciplinarity and calls into query the assumptions underlying a lot examine into growing older within the social sciences, paintings during which the dangers of ageing are virtually perpetually suppressed. It deals an immense reappraisal of Simone de Beauvoir's nice yet missed past due treatise, l. a. Vieillesse, and provides the 1st titanic dialogue of a misplaced documentary movie approximately outdated age during which Beauvoir seems to be and which she helped to put in writing, prom AU will pay DE los angeles VIEILLESSE. wondering Beauvoir's personal fairly reductive studying of Gide's paintings on outdated age, this research analyses the way his magazine and Ainsi soit-il scan with a number of representational versions for the senescent topic. The come upon among psychoanalysis and growing older is framed via a analyzing of Violette Leduc's autobiographical trilogy, during which she means that psychoanalysis, to its detriment, easily can't permit growing old to suggest. This declare is confirmed in a severe survey of contemporary theoretical and medical paintings by means of psychoanalysts drawn to growing old in France, the united kingdom and the united states. finally, Herv? Guibert's lately republished photo-novel approximately his aged great-aunts, Suzanne et Louise, is tested as a piece of intergenerational empathy and is located, additionally, to be an incredible assertion of his photographic aesthetic. Navigating among the extremes of fury ('age rage') and serene reputation ('going gently'), this learn goals all through to envision the position which growing old performs in formal, in addition to thematic, phrases in writing the lifetime of the topic.
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Extra info for Age Rage and Going Gently: Stories of the Senescent Subject in Twentieth-Century French Writing (Faux Titre 283)
It is suggested in the conclusion, by analogy with Heidegger’s argument about the subject’s thinking of another person’s death, that Guibert’s concern for his great-aunts’ ageing is inauthentic, a screen for meditating on the prospect of his own encounter with the process. 56 A common theme in this discussion of my choice of material is that of neglect. Even in the case of major, established, writers such 55 One of the main exceptions being Ursula Tidd’s important study, the relevant parts of which are addressed in Chapter Five, below, Simone de Beauvoir: Gender and Testimony (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999).
63), birth – ‘cette crise’ (I, p. 68). ’ (II, p. 148). 52 She then moves on to characterize the subjective experience of the older woman in terms of a feeling of depersonalization: Un des traits les plus accusés chez la femme vieillissante, c’est un sentiment de dépersonnalisation qui lui fait perdre tous repères objectifs […] ce n’est pas moi cette vieille femme dont le miroir renvoie le reflet. 53 Beauvoir is suggesting here that ageing, for women, necessarily involves alienation, a defensive splitting of the self into the ageless inner me and the ravaged outer shell.
La Vieillesse bears a close resemblance to Le Deuxième Sexe in crude structural terms. Both works are divided into two parts: the ‘view from the outside’ followed by the ‘view from the inside’. 5 The second part is said here to describe ‘du point de vue des femmes le monde tel qu’il leur est proposé’. In the Preamble to La Vieillesse, Beauvoir announces what appears to be an almost identical approach: Pour autrui, le vieillard est l’objet d’un savoir; pour soi, il a de son état une expérience vécue.
Age Rage and Going Gently: Stories of the Senescent Subject in Twentieth-Century French Writing (Faux Titre 283) by Oliver Davis