FRENCH STUDIES: THE TWENTIETH CENTURY, SINCE 1945 Romance Languages THE TWENTIETH CENTURY, SINCE 1945 By SEAN HAND, Lecturer in French; University College of Wales, Aberystwyth I. ESSAYS, STUDIES, CRITICAL THEORY 1989 was marked by two very important and completely different products. The first was A New History of French Literature, ed. Denis Hollier, Cambridge, Mass., and London, Harvard U.P., xxv + 1150 pp., whose essays begin with a significant date, usually thatofa literary event, rather than an author or work to be considered in isolation. This allows the proper consideration of repercussions and resonances, genres and institutions, themes and limitations in the one volume, all of which accumulates into a powerful teaching mosaic. The post-45 entries include consideration of literature and collaboration by A. Y. Kaplan, the emergence of Beckett by A. Astro, Beauvoir by T. Moi, the nouveau roman by G. Prince, the theatre of the Absurd by T. Bishop, Tel Quel by S. R. Suleiman and 'French Feminism' by J. Gallop. Indispensable as documentation, fascinating for its diverse approaches, and hugely enjoyable as a big fat inspiring book. The other notable critical event was undoubtedly the de Man affair, which threw up several nasty essays on Derrida's article 'Paul de Man's War', to which The Year’s Work in Modern Language Studies Brill


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