Women and Power: Deborah Levy

Sat 27.03.2021
19:30 - 20:30
Deborah levy sheila burnett


online event




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would you like to share your question with the author ? Send it before 26 March by mail to connect@passaporta.be, either in writing or as a short video.


in English; French and Dutch subtitles available as of 31/3

British author Deborah Levy, the author of two novels shortlisted for the Man Booker, lit up the literary year with the first two parts of her ‘living autobiography’ series, Things I Don’t Want to Know and The Cost of Living. A ‘living’ and therefore fiercely original memoir written in the first-person female, this implacable reflection on femininity, depression and literature won her the Prix Femina étranger 2020.

A double release

‘It was obvious to me that femininity, as written by men and performed by women, was the exhausted phantom that still haunted the early twenty-first century. What would it cost to step out of character and stop the story?’ How did we ever manage without Deborah Levy? Recently rediscovered by the pioneering Éditions du Sous-sol, the British novelist (b. 1959) was hitherto almost unknown in French. A delay more than made up for with the publication of not one but two of her books simultaneously in French.

Duras et Godard

Inspired by the works of Marguerite Duras, Georges Perec, Sylvia Plath and Jean-Luc Godard, Deborah Levy intends to create a different kind of female protagonist by drawing on material from her own life. Those who have read the first two parts of what will become a trilogy already know what an immense pleasure it is to discover these novels. The author will be interviewed in English by the journalist Ruth Joos about the relationship between femininity and power. The interview will be subtitled in FR and NL.

The essayist in her has a good deal to say about female experience. “It was possible that femininity, as I had been taught it, had come to an end,” she writes. “Femininity, as a cultural personality, was no longer expressive for me. It was obvious that femininity, as written by men and performed by women, was the exhausted phantom that still haunted the early 21st century.”
The New York Times

Passa Porta, De Munt

photo deborah levy © sheila burnett

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