Probématique d'un sujet féminin en régime patriarcal: Ourika de Mme de Duras

A close study of the narrative strategies, use of pronouns, and representation of the protagonist reveal that this text lays bare, in an exemplary fashion, the foundations of the patriarchal system and exposes the process of its functioning: usurpation of the maternal role, male violence, the reduction of the female subject to self loathing, isolation and destruction under the guise of "rescuing" her through the combined "civilizing" effects of colonialism, medicine, and religion. Thus this essay places Ourika in its historical and ideological contexts and considers it as a commentary on the female condition, color here being perceived as a metaphor for gender, at a time, in the wake of the hopes raised by the Revolution, which saw women's exclusion from public life and the reinforcing of their subjugation. (In French) (CB-J)
Bertrand-Jennings, C
Volume 1994-1995 Fall-Winter; 23(1-2): 42-58