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dc.contributor.authorArens, Sarah
dc.identifier.citationArens , S 2020 , ' Killer stories : ‘globalizing’ the grotesque in Alain Mabanckou’s African Psycho and Leïla Slimani’s Chanson douce ' , Irish Journal of French Studies , vol. 20 , pp. 143-172 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 261335668
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: c6092516-f013-4d79-9575-a961f2f80f4f
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0002-8397-4999/work/83086152
dc.description.abstractFocusing on Leïla Slimani's Chanson douce (2016) and Alain Mabanckou's African Psycho (2003), this article traces a grotesque aesthetics that draws on other globally circulated texts, such as North American crime fiction, the literary trope of the serial killer and the 'evil mother', as well as on the recognition value of the city of Paris to appeal to a global, and in particular Western readership. While this new aesthetics is clearly informed by previous generations of African literature, such as the texts that have served to illustrate Achille Mbembe's articulation of the grotesque, the 'commandement' in Slimani and Mabanckou's novels is exercised by less tangible dynamics of transnational capitalism, class differentiation, gender stereotypes, and social marginalisation. The article considers the ways in which both Slimani and Mabanckou's narratives place a new importance on, and instrumentalize the role of the audience — as readership — by making them a central element of their representation of the grotesque. The writers' public performance of their identities as celebrity literary authors then serves to better understand how their re-configuration of the grotesque as a 'globalized' aesthetic extends to a re-thinking of what African literature in French and its authors are today on the world literary market.
dc.relation.ispartofIrish Journal of French Studiesen
dc.rightsCopyright © 2020 Irish Journal of French Studies. This work has been made available online in accordance with publisher policies or with permission. Permission for further reuse of this content should be sought from the publisher or the rights holder. This is the author created accepted manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at
dc.subjectCrime fictionen
dc.subjectWord literatureen
dc.subjectPB Modern European Languagesen
dc.subjectPL Languages and literatures of Eastern Asia, Africa, Oceaniaen
dc.titleKiller stories : ‘globalizing’ the grotesque in Alain Mabanckou’s African Psycho and Leïla Slimani’s Chanson douceen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Frenchen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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