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list price: $18.95
edition:Paperback
category: Fiction
published: Apr 2004
ISBN:9781552451403
publisher: Coach House Books

A Cannibal and Melancholy Mourning

translated by Nathalie Stephens, by Catherine Mavrikakis

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literary
0 of 5
0 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $18.95
edition:Paperback
category: Fiction
published: Apr 2004
ISBN:9781552451403
publisher: Coach House Books
Description

 

French novelist Hervé Guilbert's 1991 novel, To the Friend Who Did Not Save My Life, is about a narrator named Hervé Guilbert who, after his close friend Muzil (really, Michel Foucault) dies of AIDS, begins to realize his symptoms are the same. In this same tradition of fictionalized memoir, this novel's narrator, called Catherine Mavrikakis, explores the perspective not of dying, but of the one left behind.

In the book, a series of Mavrikakis's friends die, many of AIDS. As each person becomes a Hervé to her, she begins to explore the idea of death as a universal yet individual experience. Furious, relieved, terrified and confused, the novel's narrator confronts the way people think about and respond to death, and quiet mourning is replaced by a series of encounters between the living and the dead. Drawing on Deleuze, Freud, Foucault and, of course, Guilbert, Mavrikakis creates a kind of living mausoleum where those unable to speak can still be heard, and where their voices challenge our passivity in the face of death.

About the Authors
Nathalie Stephens (Nathanaël) writes l'entre-genre in English and French and is the author of several books, including The Sorrow and the Fast of It, Carnet de désaccords, Paper City, Je Nathanaël and the essay of correspondence, Absence Where As (Claude Cahun and the Unopened Book). She lives in Chicago.
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Nathalie Stephens (Nathanaël) writes l'entre-genre in English and French and is the author of several books, including The Sorrow and the Fast of It, Carnet de désaccords, Paper City, Je Nathanaël and the essay of correspondence, Absence Where As (Claude Cahun and the Unopened Book). She lives in Chicago.
Author profile page >
Contributor Notes

Catherine Mavrikakis is a professor of literature at the Université de Montréal. This book, published in French in 2000 by Editions TROIS as Deuils cannibales et mélancoliques, is her first novel. She has also published the novel a va aller and, with Martine Delvaux, the epistolary fiction Ventriloquies . She is working on a third novel, called Flore-de-crachet .

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