Deprivation and Power: The Emergence of Anorexia Nervosa in Nineteenth-Century French Literature


Looking at the sociohistorical and sociocultural context, this study investigates examples of anorexia nervosa, a highly symbolic form of nonverbal discourse, in a selection of French novels spanning the period 1835-1889. In each of the novels, there is an unmistakable association between literal and figurative hunger, whereby the protagonists become human signs of their private, unconscious protest. They refuse food not because they are not hungry, but because they hunger too much for effectiveness and self-fulfillment.

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Westport, CT
Publication year:
  • 1998


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