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Theses

Poétique du roman-fleuve, de Jean-Christophe à Maumort

Abstract : There is something anachronistic about the aesthetic choices of Romain Rolland, Martin du Gard, Jules Romains and Duhamel in their romans-fleuves, as they still focus on length, realism and readability. The roman-fleuve undertakes the creation of a fictional world despite the demise of positivism and the emergence of an increasingly impenetrable world. Indeed, WW1 was a such a traumatic experience that an entire generation felt cut off from its past. Still, the roman-fleuve attempts to rebuild a fragile alternate world on the ruins of the Belle Epoque. But it isn’t simply a reenactment of the naturalist paradigm, in so far as it brings into the picture the metamorphoses of time, self and society that Bergson, Freud and Durkheim brought to the foreground. The very structure of the roman-fleuve is architectural and yet fragmented, reflecting an unstable world which is invaded by doubt. Finally, its rhetoric goes well beyond the realist perspective and shows a very modern conception of the powers of fiction. Although Martin du Gard professed that he wanted to write an « objective novel », the roman-fleuve initiates a dialogue between the author and his readers. It proves surprisingly experimental in the political, fictional and generic aspects of writing. By inviting the reader to recognize the multiple interactions between fiction and reality, it shows the different generic modes at work in the text. The roman-fleuve thus invites the reflexive reader to a literary initiation.
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Aude Leblond. Poétique du roman-fleuve, de Jean-Christophe à Maumort. Littératures. Université de la Sorbonne nouvelle - Paris III, 2010. Français. ⟨NNT : 2010PA030138⟩. ⟨tel-00714342⟩

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