Windows on Europe

De Un roman naturel à Physique de la mélancolie (Gueorgui Gospodinov) : de « nous sommes je » à « je sommes nous ». À la recherche de la totalité perdue

Marie Vrinat-Nikolov.
I see a very Proustian movement between these two novels: from a widespread doubt, an agonizing crisis caused by the dissolution of «identity» andcertainties, announcing the Apocalypse in Natural novel, towards melancholic but serene acceptance of this crisis, under the sign of empathy in The Physics of Sorrow. After the agonizing conclusion that «we are I» follows the answer: «I are». I am all of humanity. Proustian movement of painful quest that ends with luminous epiphanies and opens interesting ways for renewing our approach and looking anew at both postmodern literature and «self-writings”. Which kind of writing could reflect the doubt, which is «inherently linked to métissage”, the mobility, the lability of “identity” today, if not postmodern, a Métis writing par excellence?

De Crusoé à Robinson. Peut‑on échapper à la fiction ? Les tergiversations de la prose de Kazimierz Brandys

Marek Tomaszewski.
The prose of Kazimierz Brandys shows a constant questioning about its narrative structures. It reveals different tricks concerning the organization of the literary fiction: crypto-biography, mixing genres and styles, decomposition of discursive forms, self-creation, self-review (reinterpretations of previous works on the principle of distancing), romantic stylization, etc. Writing signs are pathetically opposed with notes of diarist tirelessly scrutinizing the daily realities. The rhetoric of the author of Letters to Ms Z never disregards the horizon of the readers expectations, Theartistic project of The Notebooks seems to be carried out through a dialectic confrontation (voluntarily articulated) between romantic fiction and the logbook. Indeed, Autobiography establishes a kind of separation between the two programmed me (the one of the statement, and of the enunciation), between the wrinting person and the described character. Moreover, at any time the purpose is to update the vision of«realistic» things perceived, without sacrificing the consciousness, the fundamental concern of literary performance. Brandys tries to snatch the romance of its only narrative function, creating fables and stories, and invest alongside another duty, that of restoring a privileged contact with the surrounding world.

Les Karaïmes de Crimée : communauté et exil

Blandine Guyot.
Two tales are being proposed, whose authors, Avraam Kouchoul and Jacques Kefeli, were Crimean Karaims. They had combated in the White Army and emigrated to France in the 20ties, following the events of the Russian revolution. In his tale « Prayer »[Molitva], written in 1930 and published in Russian in France in the review Russkaâ Mysl’ n° 45 (4820), November 26, 2010, Avraam Kouchoul describes the moment of exile in November 1920, his departure from the port of Sebastopol, Crimea and his crossing of the Black Sea on a ship towards Constantinople. In the tale « The Wise Hakim Isak, ancient legend of Crimea » [Mudreč Hakim Isak, drevnaja krymskaja byl’], published in Russian in the emigration review Vozroždenie N° 47, Paris, 1955, the story takes place in the period of the Crimean Khanat, around Bakhtchisaraj palace and Choufout Kale fortress. The Khan and his favorite spouse are in love with each other, but are threatened by divorce in spite of themselves. A Karaim doctor, Hakim Isak, renamed for his wisdom, is called to Court to try and solve this drama. The author, Jacques Kefeli, dedicates the second part of his tale to the descendants of the legend’s figures, his contemporaries in emigration in France.