Att läsa Lispector med Cixous : Écriture féminine och Stjärnans ögonblick
The essence of literature – it’s voice, it’s meaning– has always been scrutinized of interest to readers and theorists. The language in itself has the power to revolt against and undermine current and dominant hierarchies. This language can also be of a passive nature, accepting existing norms and dichotomies. This paper has the ambition to examine the language, the voice, of Clarice Lispector in her novel A Hora da Estrela (The Hour of the Star).
The theoretical horizon from which I will read The Hour of the Star is that of Hélène Cixous, which can be expressed through the term écriture féminine. Écriture féminine suggests a way of writing that revolts against dominating hierachies and, at the same time, rewrites oppositions and dichotomies. This way of writing, whatever associations and delimitations it’s name will invoke, is not available for one sex only; the sex that this writing refers to is that of the text. Thus both men and women can express écriture féminine, and as Cixous says, Jean Genet and Franz Kafka are examples of this although Clarice Lispector is the one, in Cixous’ opinion, who best expresses this feminine writing.
In my reading and writing I will focus on the meta-fictive element in A Hora da Estrela, I hope to show that this element operates in many different ways, on different levels. This I will achieve by exploring the way in which Lispector reveals the relation to the other; a text, a person, language, the subject. My thesis is that Lispector practices what Cixous theorizes. Another point I want to make is that Lispector expresses in opposition to describe. This is related to the close relation between writing and body, and in the end writing and reading. The relation between reading and writing is a question of the nature of the text and the essence of writing. The writing is in A Hora da Estrela described as a problematic venture, discussing the role of the author and the meeting with the other. This aspect goes as far as questioning the entire relation to tradition, gender, literary canon.
In conclusion: The purpose is to do a reading of and with, both Lispector and Cixous, in order to find the essence and expression of écriture féminine in the novel A Hora da Estrela.
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