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Branding the 'Beur' AuthorMinority Writing and the Media in France$
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Kathryn A. Kleppinger

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781781381960

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781381960.001.0001

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Revising the Beurette Label

Revising the Beurette Label

Faïza Guène’s Ongoing Quest to Reframe the Reception of Her Work

(p.201) Chapter VI Revising the Beurette Label
Branding the 'Beur' Author

Kathryn A. Kleppinger

Liverpool University Press

Focusing on Faïza Guène’s promotion of her four novels (Kiffe kiffe demain (2004), Du rêve pour les oufs (2006), Les gens du Balto (2008), and Un homme ça ne pleure pas (2014)), this chapter explores Guène’s theorization of literary universalism and how French journalists fall short of reading her novels in ways she believes they should. With her first novel she directly attacked interviewers who asked her social and political questions, telling them that she has nothing to say about the veil, for example, and that she finds their focus on such matters frustrating. For her second novel she became more abstract in her answers, explaining to journalists why such questioning made her uncomfortable. She then used her third novel to move away from ‘beur’ thematics but still struggled with reviewers who judged her based on her previous focus on immigrant characters. Her fourth novel moves even further from the frames repeatedly employed in readings of her work by focusing on a male protagonist and his family. Guène has, with this work, received a more socially neutral reception and has used the space accorded to her to discuss her attention to artistry and the creation of a unique voice.

Keywords:   Faïza Guène, Beurette, Universalism

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