French Feminist Theory Exemplified Through the Novels of Julia Kristeva: The Bridge From Psychoanalytic Theory to Literary Production

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The first study to examine Julia Kristeva’s novels in the context of the
relationship between French feminist and post-colonial theory, and Anglo-American Feminism.


“. . . this book offers a unique perspective on Kristeva’s theoretical and fictional work through the interplay of Kristevan and post-colonial theories and by developing a dialogue between two apparently different approaches to feminism.” - Prof. Jeanette Den Toonder, University of Groningen

“The concept of a ‘subject-in-process’ brings out Kristeva’s problematic status as a feminist theorist but Chen’s painstaking analysis of the novels and revisiting of French feminist theory help to shed invaluable light on the author’s stated goal ‘to inscribe difference at the heart of the universal and to contribute to what is more difficult than war’ and also Kristeva’s declaration: ‘If there is something original about me, I believe it lies in the totality of my existence, the existence of the female intellectual’. With this book Chen has made a valuable contribution to Kristevan studies.” – Prof. Keith Aspley, University of Edinburgh

“Chen’s choice to focus on fiction in this study is a significant new contribution to ways of re-examining the sorts of criticism Kristevan thought has attracted, as well as to our understanding of the value of writing novels within Kristeva’s multi-faceted output. . . . Chens’s perspicacious use of the novels and the solidarity of her referential base make for a book which will appeal to a wide range of scholars in literature, theory and postmodern debate.” - Prof. Katharine Swarbrick, University of Edinburgh

Table of Contents

Foreword by Dr. Jeanette Den Toonder
Introduction: Julia Kristeva on Novel
An Introduction to Part I: Looking in the Mirror French Feminist Theory or Post-colonial (Feminist) Theory
1. Love
2. Melancholia
3. Abjection
An Introduction to Part II: Sex and Text French Feminist Theory and Anglo-American Feminism
4. Time
5. Maternity
6. Body
Conclusion: French Feminist Theory as a Subject-in –Process

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