It’s a funny experience, accompanying Annie Ernaux on a trip. Even overseas, there’s always a moment when someone approaches to articulate something like: “Excuse me, you look a lot like Annie Ernaux… If I manage to get a book within fifteen minutes, could you sign it for me? » Always a moment when, even in a very quiet trattoria in Bologna, two ladies abandon an excellent mortadella to come and tell the writer of “la Place” their emotion to see it “in their favorite restaurant”. And even in the evening, when Annie Ernaux returns from piazza Maggiore, where we had a drink while looking at Pasolini’s beautiful serious face plastered on the town hall, there is a young Portuguese who is standing in front of his hotel. to ask her to sign five of his books. “I couldn’t say no”she whispers, as if confiding both a slightly guilty pleasure and the feeling of being, at times, distraught at the incredible fervor of which she is the object.
This fervor is not new. Annie Ernaux did not wait to be the first French winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature to arouse unusual enthusiasm. The time is long gone when, in the little café-grocery store run by her parents in Yvetot, a young Norman girl born in 1940 feverishly read Sartre’s “Nausea”, immersed in Camus’ “Rebellious Man”, and dreamed of writing in turn for, one day, “avenge his race”.
Today, his work is rich
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