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Hélène Cixous

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The Third Body
cover Hélène Cixous (Twayne's World Author Series, No 860) by Lynn Kettler Penrod

In this highly accessible introduction to a most complicated writer, Lynn Penrod attempts to remove the barrier to Cixous's works for the English-speaking reader - a barrier that derives from basic problems of translation and from major theoretical shifts in literary studies over the past 20 years. Penrod presents Cixous as a writer exemplifying an extraordinarily rich vein of women's writing in contemporary France - from her academic work centering on James Joyce, her copious essays on philosophy and theory, and her now-classic essays on ecriture feminine to her novels, stories, "fictions," and dramatic works. With its delight in wordplay and punning, the playfulness of its language, and its characteristic poetic style, Cixous's work, Penrod contends, provides an opportunity for exploring language in its purest form...

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Stanford Website on Cixous
This is an excellent website on Cixous! 

Defying classification into traditional literary categories, the work of Hélène Cixous takes form in multiple genres where no single text or style can convey the totality of her message. Her creative imagination is characterized by an inventive, playful use of language that takes even her literary criticism beyond the traditional limits of academic discourse and into the realm of poetry. In a rare combination of roles and forms of engagement, she has achieved distinction not just as an influential theorist but also as a novelist, playwright, and educational innovator. She is most recognized in the United States for developing the concept of écriture féminine as a way of overcoming the limits of Western logocentrism, and for opening new ways to deal with subjective difference in both writing and social theory. But it would be misleading to look only at her influence on literary criticism. While Cixous continues to write essays, novels, and plays, her recent works for the theater have become increasingly concerned with ethical and political questions in contemporary history, especially the effects of colonialism, corruption, and social injustice.

The excerpts and essays within this section are drawn from a small group of the author's texts, comments by scholars who have devoted attention to Cixous in their own research or teaching, and recent interviews.  The website also includes:

Writing and Memory
Recent Interviews
Her Theories Applied
Selected Works
Links To Related Fields
L'écriture féminine


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