french writers

Curating Identity: Fabric Façades in ‘Le Père Goriot’

Eva Berezovsky

Truth in Père Goriot seems to detach from its clothing façades and succeed societal suppression in moments of climactic doom. Reality not only lies beneath clothing––beneath appearance and subsequent labels––but it hides beneath it, creeping out with the mere removal of a shirt. Just as Gustave Courbet declares that “titles have never given a true idea of things,” clothing in Père Goriot titles its characters in preservation of a society that revolves around the superficial and rejects realism.

Remembering Albert Camus

Karolina R. Swasey

Camus was presumably the most photogenic and charismatic French writer of all time and doubtlessly one of the greatest minds and authors of his century, an expounder, if not hero, of hopelessness and absurdity. On the occasion of his 100th birthday it’s about time we demystify the icon of the incorruptible intellectual, whose magical sentences — pointing fingers that burst the most fundamental dreams of humankind like bubbles — remain unwavering boulders in the word-landscapes of the 20th century.

Remembering Proust and His Literary Masterpiece

Karolina R. Swasey

The riddles this masterpiece allures us with might act as invitations to follow up on the mysteries and secrets of its exceedingly imaginative author, whose contemporaries shaped the reductive image of Proust as the nervous, extremely shy and reclusive hypochondriac hidden in his cork-lined room. Above all, the story is a journey into the monad-like structures our consciousness is trapped in. 

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