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Dangerous Creole Liaisons$
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Jacqueline Couti

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781781383018

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781383018.001.0001

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Chercher la femme: Traces of an Ever-Present Absence

Chercher la femme: Traces of an Ever-Present Absence

(p.1) Introduction Chercher la femme: Traces of an Ever-Present Absence
Dangerous Creole Liaisons

Jacqueline Couti

Liverpool University Press

This introductory chapter first discusses the 2009 strike in Guadeloupe and Martinique and a 2012 Martinican carnival float re-enacting the argument between the politicians Claude Guéant and Serge Letchimy. Such an approach stresses the necessity to explore the history of sexualized, gendered, and racialized discourses in the French Caribbean. Indeed a masculine discourse that initiates a gendered and racial rhetoric of victimization particularly needs to be questioned. This chapter also presents Dangerous Creole Liaisons as a literary archaeology. This thus study delves throughout the nineteenth century into representations of sexuality and race to unveil the divisiveness within the French nation and the complicated tensions surrounding republicanism and its ideals. This discriminatory imagery belongs to a strategy for cultural (if not explicitly political) dominance that white Creoles (békés) first deployed. The introduction calls attention to a discursive network that flirts with sexual images, seduction, and libertinage as instruments of political domination and subversion cannot be ignored. Hence examining depictions of licentious behaviors and pernicious interconnections are central to dangerous Creole liaisons. The use of the concept of dangerous liaisons, allows one to untangle the intertwined dynamics of domination, resistance, and negotiation that too often lead to prejudice and stigmatization.

Keywords:   stereotype, libertinage, sexualization, masculinity, crosspollination, seduction, femininity, desire, homoeroticism, homophobia

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