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Corporeal Practices

(Re)figuring the Body in French Studies


Julia Prest and Hannah Thompson

Corporeal Practices brings together a collection of essays on 'the body' in French Studies. The thematic approach, typical of la nouvelle critique, is well-represented as are psychoanalytic, genetic, feminist and queer readings, demonstrating how the subject of 'the body' can fruitfully serve a number of critical perspectives. Certain papers engage in a Derridean challenge to the traditional categories of 'literature', 'theory' and 'science' by showing that the body, by its very nature post-modern, denies attempts at classification and control. The book falls into three sections: Dissecting the Body, Sexing the Body and Inscribing the Body, spanning three centuries and involving such varied media as the cartoon, the novel, the poem, the portrait and the reference book, thereby providing a stimulating and innovative reference point for students and lecturers alike.
Contents: Julia Prest/Hannah Thompson: Introduction – Yvonne Bolton: On the Perception of the Body in Diderot’s Encyclopédie – David McCallam: The Significance of Scars in some Writings of La Rochefoucauld – Melissa Percival: ‘Un Air de famille’: Greuze’s Heads and the Dissolution of the Genres – Sarah Fishwick: The Fashioned Body in Simone de Beauvoir’s L’Invitée’ and Le Sang des autres – Ryan Song: Comparative Figures of Ageing in the Memoirs of Colette and Beauvoir: Corporeality, Infirmity, Identity – Libbie McQuillan: ‘I live my body, I am my body’: Claire Bretécher’s Comic Bodies – Marion Schmid: The Disembodied Intertext: from Baudelaire’s Passante to Proust’s Albertine – Johanna Buisson: The Search for a Centre: the Mouth as a Crossroads between Body and Poetry in the Poetry of Henri Michaux – Sarah Cooper: Luce Irigaray: Reading and Writing the Body.