The postmodern novel; The couple; Intertextual game; The baby boom generation; The literary portrait of a protagonist; The ironic
Romanica Silesiana, No. 4 (2009), s. 61-71
Maryse, a postmodern novel by Francine Noël, offers an ironic look at the baby
boomers’ uncertain axiology. We focus on the multiple levels of irony inherent in the portrait
of the characters of the novel. Our analysis of the ironic discourse has two interpretative
components. First, we closely examine the dialogue between two characters, lovers,
which reflects, as in a mise en abyme, the baby boomers’ generally accepted idea of the couple.
Second, we study the ironic discourse of the couple from the social perspective, as seen
through Maryse’s sentimental affair, whose personal and professional journey exemplifies
the intertextual game found in other French classic novels (Marcel Proust’s A la recherche
du temps perdu and Quebecois novels (Gabrielle Roy’s Bonheur d ’occasion).