Unpacking (para)textual dynamics in Rwandan testimonial literature: the conflation of genocide with war in Élise Rida Musomandera’s Le Livre d’Élise

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The inclusion of literary works in publishers’ collections is most often a means to package books neatly beside works of a similar genre, theme or geographic location. Such a marketing strategy ensures that books target a suitable readership. However, questions of series fit alongside power dynamics skewed in favour of French publishers arise when considering the incorporation into a war literature collection of Élise Rida Musomandera’s survivor testimony of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda entitled Le Livre d’Élise. This article examines concomitantly the paratext and textual elements of Musomandera’s testimony. However, rather than confirming an imposition of post-production marketing strategies by the publisher, this analysis uncovers the likelihood of a process of dialogue and negotiation, thereby indicating Musomandera’s agency in her work’s publication. The arrival at this interpretation underscores the methodological advantages of carrying out a comparative examination of paratextual and textual elements of Rwandan survivor testimonies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-87
Number of pages12
JournalAustralian Journal of French Studies
Volume60
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jan 2023

Keywords

  • Rwanda
  • GENOCIDE
  • War
  • Publishing
  • Paratext
  • Francophone literature
  • Testimony

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