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Edited by Gill Rye

This book series supports the work of the Centre for the Study of Contemporary Women’'s Writing at the Institute of Modern Languages Research, University of London, by publishing high-quality critical studies of contemporary literature by women. The main focus of the series is literatures written in the languages covered by the Centre – French, German, Italian, Portuguese and the Hispanic languages – but studies of women’s writing in English and other languages are also welcome. ‘Contemporary’ includes literature published after 1968, with a preference for studies of post-1990 texts in any literary genre.

Studies in Contemporary Women’'s Writing provides a forum for innovative research that explores new trends and issues, showcasing work that makes a stimulating case for studies of new or hitherto neglected authors and texts as well as established authors. Connections are encouraged between literature and the social and political contexts in which it is created and those which have an impact on women’s lives and experiences. The goal of the series is to facilitate stimulating comparisons across authors and texts, theories and aesthetics, and cultural and geographical contexts, in this rich field of study.

Proposals are invited for either monographs or edited volumes. The series welcomes single-author studies, thematic analyses and cross-cultural discussions as well as a variety of approaches and theoretical frameworks. Manuscripts should be written in English.

Editorial Board: Adalgisa Giorgio (University of Bath), Abigail Lee Six (Royal Holloway, University of London), Emily Jeremiah (Royal Holloway, University of London), Claire Williams (St Peter’s College, University of Oxford)

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Reading for Change

Interactions between Text and Identity in Contemporary French Women’s Writing (Baroche, Cixous, Constant)

Gill Rye

How does reading literature change our life? How does it change the way we see each other? In what ways can reading impact on who we are and what we will become?
Drawing creatively on major theorists from French and Anglo-American feminisms through psychoanalysis, sociology and psychology to contemporary literary theory, the author articulates reading as a process of change. Relations between text and reader, individual and collective identities, self and other, are thought through in a sustained development of a politics of reading based on the model of the dialogue. Without losing sight of diversity and subjectivity in reading, this book explores the transformative potential of literature through themes of loss, maternity and difference in original readings of some post-1980 French fiction. Anglophone readers are introduced to the rich œuvre of Christiane Baroche and to the accessible yet thought-provoking novels of Paule Constant (winner of the 1998 prix Goncourt) as well as to new critical analyses of Hélène Cixous’s later fictions.
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Experiment and Experience

Women’s Writing in France 2000–2010


Edited by Gill Rye and Amaleena Damlé

Experiment and Experience is a collection of critical essays on twenty-first-century women-authored literature in France. In particular, the volume focuses on how contemporary women’s writing engages creatively with socio-political issues and real-life experiences. Authors covered include well-established names, the ‘new generation’ of writers who first came to the fore of the French literary scene in the 1990s and whose work has now matured into an important œuvre, as well as new emerging writers of the 2000s, whose work is already attracting scholarly and critical attention. Within the overarching theme of ‘experiment and experience’, the contributors explore a range of issues: identities, family relations, violence, borders and limits, and the environment. They consider fiction, autobiography, writing for the theatre, autofiction and other hybrid genres and forms. Their analyses highlight difficult issues, refreshing perspectives and exciting new themes at the start of the new millennium and moving forward into the coming decades.
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‘When familiar meanings dissolve…’

Essays in French Studies in Memory of Malcolm Bowie


Edited by Naomi D. Segal and Gill Rye

This volume commemorates the work of Malcolm Bowie, who died in 2007. It includes selected papers drawn from the conference held in his memory at the Institute of Germanic & Romance Studies, University of London, in May 2008, inspired by his work in nineteenth- and twentieth-century French literature. Malcolm Bowie was instrumental in shaping French studies in the United Kingdom into the interdisciplinary field it now is. The contributions to this collection are grouped around Bowie’s principal interests and specialisms: poetry, Proust, theory, visual art and music. The book is, however, more than a memorial to Malcolm Bowie’s work and legacy. In its inclusion of work by established and eminent members of the academic profession as well as new and emerging scholars, it is also a showcase for cutting-edge work in French studies in the United Kingdom and beyond.