YOURCENAR’S IMAGINARY FATHER: OLD MELANCHOLY AND CHARMING RETICENCE
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The paper examines Marguerite Yourcenar’s memoir trilogy “Le Labyrinthe du Monde”. The article is part of a broader investigation related to the staging of different voices in the author's work. There is no clear differentiation between the writer’s biographical and fictional écriture. Yourcenar uses similar narrative and fictionalizing techniques; she incorporates her own experience and inscribes it in a broader narrative frame. The present text raises the question of the author's own imaginary genealogy – such a gesture is recognized as a particular creation of a strong female image and voice, which was not present in the works of the Belgian-French novelist prior to the publication of the memoir triology “The Labyrinth of the World”. The paper turns to both Julia Kristeva’s theory of imaginary father and Yourcenar’s fantasy of her own genealogy. The following analysis articulates the indirect question to Yourcenar’s late work of whether kinship is stronger and more real than the imaginary worlds around us such as literature, fine arts, one's own fantasy. In other words: who is Yourcenar’s imaginary father – Proust and/or Michel de K.?