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Catani, Damian: "Louis-Ferdinand Céline, literary genius or national pariah? Defining moral parameters for influential cultural figures, post-Charlie Hebdo." In: French Cultural Studies 27.3 (2016), S. 268–278.
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|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Catani2016
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Keywords: "Charlie Hebdo", Céline, Frankreich, Kulturpolitik, Literatur, Religion, Satire
Collection: French Cultural Studies
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In January 2011 the French Minister of Culture, Frédéric Mitterrand, withdrew Louis-Ferdinand Céline from a list of canonical French authors specifically selected for a national celebration of culture. This bold decision was deeply divisive: while many welcomed Mitterrand’s intervention, a number of prominent writers, some of them Jewish, opposed it on the grounds that Céline’s unacceptable political beliefs – expressed in three anti-Semitic pamphlets and his flirtation with Nazism – should not overshadow his literary genius. In the light of this controversy, and of the rise in anti-Semitism following the Charlie Hebdo attacks of January 2015, this paper proposes Céline as a vital case study of the moral parameters a democratic nation should apply to a culturally important figure whose political views are deemed unacceptably reactionary.