‘Comment rester vivant avec ce qui est mort en nous?’ L’amitié et la promesse chez Wajdi Mouawad

Campmas, Aude (2012) ‘Comment rester vivant avec ce qui est mort en nous?’ L’amitié et la promesse chez Wajdi Mouawad. International Journal of Francophone Studies, 15, (1), 103-107. (doi:10.1386/ijfs.15.1.103_1).


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This article examines the representation of the monstrous family in the work of Wajdi Mouawad, and the strategies put in place by the plays’ protagonists to escape it. The transgression of familial links, a consequence of a state of war, is a central motif of his tetralogy: such transgression may take the form, for example,of rape, incest, patricide and fratricide. The protagonists of Mouawad’s plays, children of war, have inherited a genealogy of blood. The family is cursed: it symbolizes violence, a savage world, a primitive state. It is a monster, where promises of
solidarity and fraternity are not kept. To escape the hell of the family-in-war and the weight of inheritance, the protagonists must find or create other kinds of interpersonal connections. And such connections exist in two modes: friendship and promises. These journeys towards the other, consubstantial with self-knowledge, allow broken connections to be reconstructed, and long-dead, long-forgotten people to be rediscovered and remembered. Such journeys are complex and diverse, but they allow new modes of understanding, forgiveness and, above all, of rebuilding
communities. Le Sang des promesses (2009b) tells us that in spite of a childhood fractured, injured, betrayed and disconsolate, we are still constructed in and by dialogue.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1386/ijfs.15.1.103_1
ISSNs: 1368-2679
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PB Modern European Languages
Divisions : Faculty of Humanities > Modern Languages
ePrint ID: 344744
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
13 August 2012Published
Date Deposited: 31 Oct 2012 16:38
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 14:36
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/344744

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