Le Tapis-franc criminel et le salon respectable: mise en regard chronotopique dans les mystères urbains (1842–59)

This article aims to shed light on how discourses on space, time, and society intersect at the tapis-franc (“dive” or “sleazy tavern”) in several French urban mysteries (from Eugène Sue, Paul Féval, Eugène-François Vidocq, Louis-François Raban, Clémence Robert, and Alexandre Dumas). This article will show that these urban mysteries describe such locations as a space radically different from but also intimately similar to the reader’s world. Moreover, it is closely linked to a better-known chronotope, the salon réaliste, which these novels revisit and adapt. Urban mysteries establish their representation of the city in large part on those two chronotopes, which are used to create a critical portrait of their time and of society. Thus, they offer to the reader what could be described as a chronotopic organization. (In French)

Nicolas Gauthier
Volume 46.1–2