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Carol Mavor, Reading Boyishly: Roland Barthes, J. M. Barrie, Jacques Henri Lartigue, Marcel Proust, and D. W. Winnicott (Durham, NC, and London: Duke University Press, 2007). x ++ 522pp. ISBN: 9780822339625.

Carol Mavor, Reading Boyishly: Roland Barthes, J. M. Barrie, Jacques Henri Lartigue, Marcel... level, however, Mavor runs into considerable trouble trying to reconcile Lartigue with her overriding thesis about the link between boyishness and maternal overattachment. Struggling with a refractory body of evidence, she writes: ‘While Lartigue was surely close to his mother (Maman snapped the famous picture of our impish boy in the bathtub) and his boyhood journals are filled with pleasant descriptions of days attached to Mami – running errands, paying visits, going to the Eiffel Tower, checking out the fashionable of Paris – Lartigue’s attachment to Mother is certainly without the obsession of Barrie, Proust, and Barthes. Nevertheless, the maternal looms in his own refusal to never grow up’ (30–1). The grammatical slip in the last sentence – the ‘never’ is extraneous, combining with ‘refusal’ to produce a double-negative that inverts what Mavor means to say – tips us off that something is awry, and reflects the more serious logical dysfunction of the sentence. Unable to locate an exceptional maternal presence in Lartigue, Mavor resorts to tautology, taking for granted that which needs to be proved: the maternal looms in Lartigue’s refusal to grow up for the reason that not growing up is a function of the maternal. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Modernist Cultures Edinburgh University Press

Carol Mavor, Reading Boyishly: Roland Barthes, J. M. Barrie, Jacques Henri Lartigue, Marcel Proust, and D. W. Winnicott (Durham, NC, and London: Duke University Press, 2007). x ++ 522pp. ISBN: 9780822339625.

Modernist Cultures , Volume 7 (1): 135 – May 1, 2012

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
© Edinburgh University Press 2012
Subject
Book Reviews; Film, Media and Cultural Studies
ISSN
2041-1022
eISSN
1753-8629
DOI
10.3366/mod.2012.0032
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

level, however, Mavor runs into considerable trouble trying to reconcile Lartigue with her overriding thesis about the link between boyishness and maternal overattachment. Struggling with a refractory body of evidence, she writes: ‘While Lartigue was surely close to his mother (Maman snapped the famous picture of our impish boy in the bathtub) and his boyhood journals are filled with pleasant descriptions of days attached to Mami – running errands, paying visits, going to the Eiffel Tower, checking out the fashionable of Paris – Lartigue’s attachment to Mother is certainly without the obsession of Barrie, Proust, and Barthes. Nevertheless, the maternal looms in his own refusal to never grow up’ (30–1). The grammatical slip in the last sentence – the ‘never’ is extraneous, combining with ‘refusal’ to produce a double-negative that inverts what Mavor means to say – tips us off that something is awry, and reflects the more serious logical dysfunction of the sentence. Unable to locate an exceptional maternal presence in Lartigue, Mavor resorts to tautology, taking for granted that which needs to be proved: the maternal looms in Lartigue’s refusal to grow up for the reason that not growing up is a function of the maternal.

Journal

Modernist CulturesEdinburgh University Press

Published: May 1, 2012

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