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Exteriors

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Both laws rely on the same misconception of reality, the only reference being oneself: in the first case, we imagine everyone else has lived our life, while in the second, we long to recapture our past identity through people who are frozen in time, whose features are the same as when we last saw them. Whether or not this is fictionalized, the reader will never know, which not only lends itself to the “mystery and opacity” of the characters’ lives, but Ernaux’s as well. Taking the form of random journal entries over the course of seven years, Exteriors concentrates on the ephemeral encounters that take place just on the periphery of a person's lived environment. I’ve been thinking a lot whether the reason I like this style of writing so much is because it’s so disjointed and easy to process.

Tonight, in the neighbourhood known as Les Linandes, a woman went by on a stretcher held by two firemen. Exteriors is in many ways the most ecstatic of Ernaux’s books – the first in which she appears largely free of the haunting personal relationships she has written about so powerfully elsewhere, and the first in which she is able to leave the past behind her. Her other works include Exteriors, A Girl's Story, A Woman's Story, The Possession, Simple Passion, Happening, I Remain in Darkness, Shame, A Frozen Woman, and A Man's Place.Ernaux meg is jegyzi, hogy noha az ehhez hasonló írásfragmentumok frusztrálják, szükségét érzi rögzíteni ezeket a benyomásokat, ugyanekkor nem szűnik meg irodalmat keresni a valóságban. The man who collects the trolleys was resting against the wall of the roofed-in passageway that connects the car park with the square. It’s so understated, in fact, that I’m not sure a publishing house would touch it now were it from an unknown author. Ha együtt utaztunk volna, álltunk volna sorba a hentesnél, biztosan mást vittünk volna haza élményként. He told me that he thought I was trying to goad him into a reaction by showing him the watch and its manufacturer, having previously known his political stance and general affiliation with the company.

Reminiscent of the poet Denise Riley’s Time Lived, Without its Flow, a study of how grief mangles chronology, Simple Passion is a riveting investigation, in a less tragic key, into what happens to one’s experience of time in the throes of romantic obsession. She has also won the Prix Renaudot for A Man's Place and the Marguerite Yourcenar Prize for her body of work.Committing to paper the movements, postures, and words of the people I meet gives me the illusion that I am close to them. For this Prix Renaudot-winning author, childhood was not just a time of life but a cottage industry. Ez az első - és egyetlen, azt hiszem -, ami nem Ernaux életét tárgyalja, noha tulajdonképpen ezek a benyomások is személyesek. Szerettem, mert más mint az autofikciói, és egy olyan életbe enged betekintést, amiről én a nyolcvanas években nem is álmodhattam.

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