Decentring France

by King, Gemma
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King, Gemma Decentring France
King, Gemma - Decentring France

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In a world defined by the flow of people, goods and cultures, many contemporary French films explore the multicultural nature of today's France, portraying multilingualism in novel and empowering ways. In such films, the status of a wide range of languages is evolving from trivialised to central; through strategic language use, characters wrest power from one another and wield it in innovative ways. From rival lingua francas such as English to socio-politically marginalised languages such as Arabic or Kurdish, these characters exploit their knowledge of multiple languages and offer counter-perspectives to dominant ideologies of the role of linguistic diversity in society.

Decentring France: multilingualism and power in contemporary French cinema is the first substantial study of multilingual film in France. Unpacking the power dynamics at play in the multilingual dialogue of eight emblematic films, it proposes non-binary frameworks for examining language difference in cinema. It reveals how strategic language use can be a tool for exerting social power in many twenty-first-century films, from Jacques Audiard's Un proph├Ęte to Xavier Beauvois' Des hommes et des dieux. Bridging the fields of film studies and French cultural studies, this book argues that many contemporary French films take a new approach to language and power, showing how even the most historically maligned languages can empower their speakers. Through studies on social power combined with close film analysis, Decentring France offers a unique insight to academics and students alike, into the place of language and power in French cinema today.


King, Gemma

Further information

Biography Artist:

Gemma King is Lecturer in French Studies at the Australian National University
Number of Pages:
Media Type:

Master Data

Product Type:
Paperback book
Release date:
June 1, 2019
Package Dimensions:
0.214 x 0.138 x 0.014 m; 0.297 kg
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