Description:As a thin slice of research from her book-in-progress comparing certain 20th-century gay male writers and their respective queer communities, in New York and Paris, before, during and after the Western AIDS epidemic (1996, when effective antiretroviral treatment was discovered), French Language and Francophone Studies educator and Alliance Française instructor Claudia Brown will give a talk on the remarkable French writer, Jean Genet (1910-1986).
Claudia’s presentation will explore Genet’s underground homosexual – and homosocial – first novel, Notre-Dame-des-Fleurs (1943)
(Eng, Our Lady of the Flowers), written entirely while in prison. Orphaned, uneducated and constantly in and out of jail,
Genet is introduced into the Paris literary world by fellow artist Jean Cocteau who recognizes Our Lady of the Flowers as
a masterpiece, “a mythology of ‘queers’,” and helps get it published.
Through explications of the novel’s poetic passages as well as Genet’s unique perspective of gay life, Claudia will share how and why Genet, this gruff, thuggish autodidact, influenced popular notions of homosexual existence in post-war France, more than 20 years before the eruption of the Gay Liberation Movement, in France and the US.Questions and discussion encouraged after the presentation.
*** WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ***
Date : Friday, February 24
Time : 6 PM
Duration : 50 minutes presentation + Q&A
Location : In person or Online (Zoom)
Language : English
Fee : $10 for non members / Free for Alliance Française members
*** ABOUT CLAUDIA BROWN ***