Juliana de Nooy

Juliana de Nooy completed a doctorate at the Université de Paris 7 and is a Senior Lecturer in French in the School of Languages and Cultures at the University of Queensland, Australia. Her research focuses on questions of identity and difference in both cultural studies and language learning. She is the author of Derrida, Kristeva, and the Dividing Line (Taylor & Francis, 1998), Twins in Contemporary Literature and Culture (Palgrave, 2005), and (with Barbara Hanna) Learning Language and Culture via Public Internet Discussion Forums (Palgrave, 2009).

orcid https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0014-0989

What’s France got to do with it? »

Contemporary memoirs of Australians in France

Authored by: Juliana de Nooy
Publication date: July 2020
While only one book-length memoir recounting the sojourn of an Australian in France was published in the 1990s, well over 40 have been published since 2000, overwhelmingly written by women. Although we might expect a focus on travel, intercultural adjustment and communication in these texts, this is the case only in a minority of accounts. More frequently, France serves as a backdrop to a project of self-renovation in which transplantation to another country is incidental, hence the question ‘What’s France got to do with it?’ The book delves into what France represents in the various narratives, its role in the self-transformation, and the reasons for the seemingly insatiable demand among readers and publishers for these stories. It asks why these memoirs have gained such traction among Australian women at the dawn of the twenty-first century and what is at stake in the fascination with France.