Food and societal (dis)order in Marie Darrieussecq’s works

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This article analyses the way Marie Darrieussecq explores oppositions intrinsic to food, both as a lens that reflects the absurdities of various societal orders and as an instrument to contest, respond to, and subvert these orders. First I focus on fctional works (Truismes [1996] and Il faut beaucoup aimer les hommes [2013]), and on the othering processes they depict. In its relationship to the animal human distinction and to colonial and postcolonial discourses, food in these works is shown to be both welcoming and divisive. Ten I study non-fctional texts (Darrieussecq s autobiographically inspired Le Bébé [2002] and her biography of Paula Modersohn Becker, Être ici est une splendeur [2016]) in which food is linked to discourses of mothering and to the upholding of the patriarchal order. Finally I draw on recipes published by Darrieussecq to show how reading as we eat can contribute to the development of new types of readerly hospitalities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)299-321
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Romance Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2020


  • Animality
  • Breastfeeding
  • Hospitality
  • Motherhood
  • Other
  • Patriarchy
  • Postcolonial
  • Reading

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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