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Être Pédé et Pauvre: En finir avec Eddy Bellegueule’s Exploration of Poverty and Gay Performativity

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When discussing gay literature in the French, contemporary sphere, one of the most up
and coming and prominent authors is Édouard Louis. His works’ focus on the realism and
violence of the working class offers a critical and necessary perspective

When discussing gay literature in the French, contemporary sphere, one of the most up
and coming and prominent authors is Édouard Louis. His works’ focus on the realism and
violence of the working class offers a critical and necessary perspective of the gay experience in
modern-day France. While recent in their creation, Louis’ works follow a connecting thread that
is inseparable from other autofiction novels that have a narrator with same sex attractions such as
Annie Ernaux’s Ce qu’ils disent or rien and Didier Eribon’s Retour à Reims. Often commonly
discussed as French LGBT literature, these autofictional works that extend from Gide to Eribon
to now Louis demonstrate how the proposed societal dualities, limitations, and hierarchies
described by philosophers like Michel Foucault and Judith Butler affect homosexual
performativity. Louis’ first novel En finir avec Eddy Bellegueule, published on January 2, 2014,
offers another illustration of this analysis. It specifically describes the metaphysical
(metaphysical being the relationship between the outer stimuli and internal perspective) effects
and constraints of current poverty on homosexual performativity. By analyzing En finir avec
Eddy Bellegueule through this theoretical framework of power and poverty, this thesis adds a
theoretical and intersectional nuance to the narrative voice that current literature focusing on the
novel’s landscape mentions but does not reflect on. I argue that it is important to attach an
autofictional timeline that is necessary to promote and apply future ontological doctrines to this
genre.

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Date Created
2021-05