L'écriture du génocide dans le roman africain : comment témoigner de l'indicible? / par Monique Gasengayire.
Our thesis is based on analysis of four different novels that have been published at the end of the project Rwanda. Écrire par devoir de mémoire, initiated by the African Arts and Media Association in 1998. Those novels have been inspired by stories of the RwandanTutsi genocide that took place in 1994. The aim of this thesis is to analyse their relation to the African francophone literature, with regards to the new literary element of the unspeakable resulting from the genocide and its representation.The tools provided by semiotic and novel based theories, in the genocide context, have helped us to underline different strategies that allow writers to communicate what is known as unspeakable. The semiotic theory helps us to understand the concept of the genocide's unspeakable and how it becomes strategic in representing an inconceivable event such as genocide. As for the novel based theory, it facilitates the study of representing the genocide reality in a fictional story. To those two approaches, we have added a third one that emphasizes the role of testimony in that kind of fictions. The thesis shows the difficulty of putting into fiction a subject that is beyond understanding. In this case, the above theories contribute to discover diverse strategies that allow authors to send out the genocide message. All along this study, the analysis points out that those strategies depend all on testimony. It becomes then a strategic way of approaching a genocide story. Our study reveals that genocide fictionalisation relies on testimony, which is then exposed to different literary procedures in order to make it possible for the writer to convey genocide to his (her) readers. Among those procedures, we can underline the pathétisation, by which a genocide story is represented through dramatized and pathetic scenes for instance. Given the results of our analysis that emphasized mostly the role of the genocide's unspeakable, the thesis expresses a new aesthetics in African francophone literature. It is indeed a result of the arrival of this kind of stories based on genocide in this literature. Key words. Literature, novel, francophone, genocide, testimony, unspeakable, memory, Africa, Rwanda, semiotics.
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