France; aesthetic inquiries; 1880; concerns; social model; USA; literature
Geinoz Philippe (2016), L'américanisation de la ville et l'intimité perdue : Huysmans et le nouveau Paris, in Romantisme
, 2/2016(172), 118-127.
Geinoz Philippe (2015), Baudelaire yankee, ou les ressources de la "grande barbarie" américaine, in Le Magasin du XIXe siècle
, 2015(5), 72-79.
Geinoz Philippe (2014), Le travail du dimanche. Recherche d'une contemporanéité dans les Derniers Vers de Laforgue., in Littérature
, (174), 54-71.
Geinoz Philippe, Usage des Etats-Unis dans les romans d'Edmond de Goncourt, in Reverzy Eléonore Bourguinat Nicolas (ed.), Presses universitaires de Strasbourg, Strasbourg.
This proposal began with the observation that over a very brief period of perhaps 10 years around 1880 there were repeated references to modern America - not the native Indian land described by Chateaubriand or alluded to in Rimbaud’s Bateau ivre - in various texts which, although quite different from one another, together contributed to a significant aesthetic inquiry. My research will focus on this discreet yet fascinating connection which, albeit not explicitly, raises aesthetic questions and takes up a more or less direct position on an emerging social model, one that is considered from a distance - oceans apart - yet perceived as having the potential to become our own. In so doing, it appears to offer a promising angle from which we might understand the resources of resistance and appropriation that literature offers the individual, against a historical backdrop - the establishment of a lasting republic - that profoundly modified the conditions of one’s founding identity.The proposed study will begin by charting this American presence (representations of the United States as well as the actual presence of American writers) in French novels and poems from this period. It will then show how this presence reveals concerns for the future of French society before concluding with an analysis of the detail in the texts and the way in which these concerns are expressed, not only in terms of explicit content but also and above all in terms of the aesthetic novelty that the texts offered to the reader as a resource.