Silence and Resistance

By:
Negin Tahvildary
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Most artists, writers, poets and painters served in the French resistance movement. There followed a period of intense creativity, maybe the most concentrated fruitful period of French Literature. At a time, when the media and all forms of publishing were controlled and censored, great authors have created a new act of speech: the language of silence.

Witnesses of the insufficiency of language, these artists evoke the silence which imposes its rhythm and even seems to control the words. Certainly, they felt that human language is incapable of self-expression; hence there are many pauses, three points, dashes and ellipses which mark the absence of their speech. Such as dramaturges whose texts contain rare spoken passages, just pantomime and mimics. In this silence one hears the music of a will to life.

Their techniques of discontinuity may also prove to be a measure of the immense evolution in prose and poetry: by expressive cuts, suggestive alliterations and contrasts between the terms of ordinary language, they create a pure language that fuses the realities of nature with the imaginary spectacle.

Later works tended toward extreme concentration and brevity. Authors waged a lifelong war on words, trying to yield the silence that underlines them.

In this article it is discussed how the imposed silence became the most sublime art tool for French artists to create a new, original language: the language of silence; a language which ensures harmony in the union of the human being with nature and mark the resistance of the authors.


Keywords: Resistance, French Literature, Language of Silence, Poetic of Occupation, Art of Concision
Stream: Art and Human Rights
Presentation Type: 30 minute Paper Presentation in English or French
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.


Negin Tahvildary

PhD Assistant, Dept. of French Language and Literature, SBU
San Francisco, CA, USA

I have been teaching French language, culture and literature since September 2003 as a PhD assistant in Beheshti University of Tehran (SBU). I have also got a degree in Law and practice law as an Attorney at law and legal advisor. Apart from my ABD in French and Comparative Literature Studies, I hold a FOS degree (teaching specialized French to Law & Business Students) from Stendhal III University in Grenoble, France. I am also a member of the British Comparative Literature Association and the International Comparative Literature Association.
I have earned three prestigious scholarships from the French Embassy and two scholarships from the British Council in Iran. I have also completed teaching courses, general and professional, as well as, many researches in France and in the United Kingdom. These courses along with my research have helped me to develop my knowledge of new teaching methods and have allowed me to meet French professors, which foster the exchange and renewal of critical ideas and concepts.

Additionally, I initiated a series of seminars that I held with my students on comparative topics to promote their intellectual engagement with cultural texts of all kind. I have also reviewed and compared the work of French 19th Century, British 19th Century, American 19th Century, and Persian 20th Century writers. My research on these fields has been presented in the form of speeches and lectures at different international conferences in the United Kingdom and in the United States of America. I have recently presented a paper at Mountain Interstate Foreign Language Conference in Wake Forest University on Arthur Rimbaud, an acclaimed French poet.

My research aim is to promote the scholarly study of cultures and literatures without confinement to national or linguistic boundaries, in relation to other disciplines.

Ref: A06P0420