UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

La sclérose d'un malaise identitaire : étude comparée de la représentation de la folie dans Le livre d'Emma de Marie-Célie Agnant et dans L'hiver de pluie de Lise Tremblay Marguerite, Aurélie


Influenced by the principles once denounced by Aurélien Boivin and Cécile Dubé, Marie-Célie Agnant and Lise Tremblay tell the story of two women faced by silence and a general misunderstanding. It is by exposing the story of Élise and Emma, who have been stigmatized with madness, that Tremblay and Agnant expose a dark side of the power of discourse: it can liberate or reinforce a sense of alienation or oppression. We are led to rethink its problematical force through the alienated wanderings of a character on a quest to overcome somehow a disappointing love affair (Élise) and the account of the tribulations of a young woman accused of infanticide (Emma). Agnant and Tremblay also exploit the theme of space (whether it be historical, physical or symbolic) by carrying us into both the maze of History and that of Quebec City. Among other states and situations, their characters are undeniably made prisoners of a physical space that conditions their discourses: a hospital for Emma and an old fortified city for Élise. The walls that are holding back Emma and Élise are nothing but the visual aspect of a more profound and tragic ailment that will only be exposed once the madwomen of Tremblay and Agnant, paradoxically, reclaim its power.

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