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Le Grimoire animal. L'existence des bêtes dans la prose littéraire de langue française 1891-1938

Abstract : At the turn of the twentieth century and increasingly until the Second World War, French-language literature started to provide animals with capacities that were traditionally reserved for humans. In the relevant texts, animals have a rich emotional life, they interact and communicate with their environment and other living beings in numerous and complex ways ; by producing and interpreting signs, they construct a subjective world of their own. They demonstrate, moreover, amazing reasoning and cognitive abilities and original personalities. In short, at a time when, in philosophy, science and literature, prevail the anthropocentric paradigm and reductionist conceptions of animal life, literary animals become subjects, they are granted, by a whole set of writers, an existence. This existence is most of the time enigmatic : reading and writing therefore involve its unveiling, the deciphering but also the questioning and configuration of the animal "grimoire" (Genevoix). Inspired in particular by this heuristic metaphor, I wish in this piece of research to study how, between 1891 and 1938, French-language literary prose, thus a whole variety of writings, recreates animal lives, tries to apprehend the concrete nature of animals and the relationships we have with them. My final goal is to measure the ethical dimension of these texts which, by deconstructing anthropocentrism, help to rethink the way we view animals and our coexistence with them.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 23, 2019 - 5:20:08 PM
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Nicolas Picard. Le Grimoire animal. L'existence des bêtes dans la prose littéraire de langue française 1891-1938. Littératures. Université Sorbonne Paris Cité, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019USPCA054⟩. ⟨tel-02329910⟩

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