Before Auschwitz: Irène Némirovsky and the Cultural Landscape of Inter-war France, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Before Auschwitz

Irène Némirovsky and the Cultural Landscape of Inter-war France, 1st Edition

By Angela Kershaw


234 pages

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This book analyses Irene Némirovsky’s literary production in its relationship to the literary and cultural context of the inter-war period in France. It examines topics of central importance to our understanding of the literary field in France in the period, such as: the close relationship between politics and literature; the historical, political, cultural and personal legacies of the First World War; the so-called ‘crisis of the novel’ and the attempt to create and develop new narrative forms; the phenomenon of Russian emigration to Paris in the wake of the Russian Revolution and Civil War; the possibilities for the creation of a French-Jewish identity and mode of writing; and the threat of fascism and the approach of the Second World War.


"Kershaw's in-depth study allows one to appreciate Némirovsky's exceptional life and work, before Auschwitz. Essential."-- C. B. Kerr, Vassar College, Choice

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction 1: The Making of a Literary Reputation 2: Before David Golder 3: A Russian Soul 4: A Jewish Soul 5: Crisis and Conflict: Constructions of National Identity 6: Conclusions: Second Flowering Notes Bibliography Index

About the Author

Angela Kershaw is a Senior Lecturer in French at the University of Birmingham. She is the author of Forgotten Engagements: Women, Literature and the Left in 1930s France (Rodopi, 2007).

About the Series

Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

From Joyce to Rushdie, Modernism to Food Writing, Routledge Studies in Twentieth Century Literature looks at both the literature and culture of the 20th century. This series is our home for cutting-edge, upper-level scholarly studies and edited collections. Considering literature alongside religion, popular culture, race, gender, ecology, travel, class, space, and other subjects, titles are characterized by dynamic interventions into established subjects and innovative studies on emerging topics.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LITERARY COLLECTIONS / Continental European
LITERARY CRITICISM / European / French