Gender Difference and Cultural Labour in French Fiction from Zola to Colette

  • Nicholas White
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Nineteenth-Century Writing and Culture book series (PNWC)


Novels of the French Third Republic brought to bear a particular reflexivity and investment in their accounts of specifically cultural collaborations between men and women (such as journalism, painting, and the stage). This chapter compares the ways in which these joint efforts were depicted in male-authored mimetic fiction such as Zola’s short story Madame Sourdis (1880) and Maupassant’s novel Bel-Ami (1885), and in female-authored fiction such as Marcelle Tinayre’s La Rebelle (1905) and Colette’s La Vagabonde (1910). In particular, it examines the way in which the long lexical history of ‘association’, not least in post-revolutionary egalitarian politics, lends ideological weight to tales of artistic and romantic union, and the questions they ask.


Berufsroman Colette Cultural labour Émile Zola Gender Guy de Maupassant Künstlerroman Marcelle Tinayre Work 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nicholas White
    • 1
  1. 1.University of CambridgeCambridgeUK

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