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Isabelle de Montolieu reads Jane Austen’s Fictional Minds

The First French Translations of Free Indirect Discourse from Jane Austen’s "Persuasion</I>

Adam Russell

The hallmark technique of Jane Austen’s mature writing – known as free indirect discourse (FID) – is responsible for what has become known as the «inward interest» of Austen’s writing. In Persuasion, FID is used extensively to represent the complex life of the heroine’s mind as she converses with herself. Austen’s posthumously published «late» novel Persuasion was first translated into French in 1821 by Isabelle de Montolieu as La Famille Elliot, ou l’ancienne inclination. The present study focuses on the question of how Montolieu handled FID in her French translation: At the time she was translating Persuasion into French, FID did not exist as a formal grammatical category. Neither did Montolieu have the possibility of seeking a model in the works of Flaubert – whose own extensive and innovative use of FID is comparable to Austen’s – as he was writing much later in the century.
Previous translation studies have completely ignored this very crucial aspect of this translation. The author adopts a cross-disciplinary approach encompassing the history of publication, Jane Austen studies, translation studies, and narratology. This book tests the applicability of the conceptual framework of narratology within the field of Translation Studies. The author identifies key analytical concepts from the field of narratology and applies them to Montolieu’s translation with the aim of revealing what happened to Austen’s FID when Persuasion was first translated into French.

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Index Bold numbers denote reference to tables. Abbott, Porter 14, 59 abridgement 36, 55, 56 n.69 Adam, Jean-Michel 60 adaptation 35, 53, 55, 56 n.69 Allen, Walter 14, 15 n.18 altérité énonciative 93, 101 n.126, 102, 105, 106, 122, 128 ambiguation 108, 109, 110, 115 ambiguity and free indirect discourse (FID) 30, 32, 65, 90, 115, 138–139 and pronoun ON 176–178, 182–183, 190 analepse 26, 125, 129 anaphoric pronouns 91, 93, 96, 135, 136 architranseme 53 n.58 aspectualisation 103–104, 121–122, 129, 197 asserted PDV 100 n.123, 239 Atlani, Françoise 168, 185 aural perception 106 Austen, Jane and development of free indirect discourse (FID) 15–16, 30, 69 and politics, 22–23, 25 biographical note in La Famille El- liot 19, 229–234 early French translations 10–12, 35– 46 Emma 209 n.4, 210–211 French critics’ attitudes to 41–46, 209 n.3 innovative narrative techniques 21– 24, 176 “inward interest” of writing 9, 16, 17, 19, 25, 31 Mansfield Park 11, 36–37 n.6, 210, 211 modernity of work 14–15 Northanger Abbey 20–21, 34, 43, 45 n.32 Pride and Prejudice 10–11, 36–37, 41, 43 n.25 reception in France 11–12, 38–46 representation of time in novels 23, 133–134 Sense and Sensibility 10, 20, 39–40, 210–211 see also Famille Elliot, La; Persua- sion Bakhtin, Mikhail 31 Bal, Mieke 33 Bally, Charles 68 Banfield, Ann 70, 71–72, 74–77, 84 Barbaresi, Lavinia 53 Barthes, Roland 12,...

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