Les symptômes de l'histoire : l'intime et le collectif dans Des hommes de Laurent Mauvignier

Author: Eibl, Doris G.
Source document: Études romanes de Brno. 2012, vol. 33, iss. 1, pp. [97]-104
Extent
[97]-104
  • ISSN
    1803-7399 (print)
    2336-4416 (online)
Type: Article
Language
French
License: Not specified license
Abstract(s)
This article focuses on the question to what extent Laurent Mauvignier's Des hommes is not simply a novel on the Algerian War but also an enquiry into how past experiences inform the present, making it a symptom of the past. The novel's characters are both subjects and objects, caught up in the remorseless mechanism of repressing, remembering and forgetting. The questions that arise in view of the novel's major themes help to make sense of Laurent Mauvignier's poetic choices in approximating the past: how and to what extent does literature make it possible to remedy the absolute absence of the past? Does literature enable us to reconsider the logic of historiography's dominant knowledge about the past? How does literature proceed in order to link the intimate and individual to collective history, thereby signalling that the intimate is inextricably tied to the collective and vice versa? Laurent Mauvignier's novel shows that collective memory, which is always polyphonic, may be the best means to reactualise a complex past and that perhaps this is only possible in fiction.
Document
References:
[1] AGAMBEN, Giorgio; HAVERKAMP, Anselm. Giorgio Agamben im Gespräch. Literaturen, 2001, n° 1, p. 22–27.

[2] BOUCHERON, Patrick. "Toute littérature est assaut contre la frontière". Note sur les embarras historiens d'une rentrée littéraire. Annales. Histoire, Sciences Sociales, 2010, n° 2, p. 441–467.

[3] CERTEAU, Michel de. L'Écriture de l'histoire. Paris: Gallimard, 1975.

[4] MAUVIGNIER, Laurent. Des hommes. Paris: Minuit 2009.

[5] Le Petit Robert. Paris: Le Robert 1984.

[6] ROBIN, Régine. Le Naufrage du siècle suivi de Le Cheval blanc de Lénine ou l'Histoire autre. Montréal: XYZ, 1995.

[7] ROBIN, Régine. Le roman mémoriel. Montréal: Le Préambule, 1989.