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The image of the girl child in Raymond Queneau’s Zazie in the Metro

Eylem Aksoy Alp

Abstract: Raymond Queneau, one of the pioneers of the Oulipo literary group and the author of Exercises in Style (French version: 1947, English version: 1958), became more widely known with Zazie in the Metro, original version in French published in 1959. Known for his sensitivity to style, in this work, which he wrote mostly in the form of dialogue, the author tries to put forward a new way of writing by approaching the daily spoken language. In order to better reflect his linguistic and stylistic quest as a result of modernity, the author chose Zazie as the lead character, a girl who grew up at an early age and whose childhood was stolen due to the negativities she experienced. The author also made an effort to narrate the events with the purified language of Zazie. In his story, which he built on the character of Zazie, Queneau tries to reveal a new world and a way of perception through Zazie's point of view and frankness. Zazie puts adults in trouble with her disturbing questions, pushes their limits. By refusing to accept the world as it is, she also contributes to the questioning of all topics by characters of the novel as well as its readers. In these respects, the character of Zazie reminds us of the concept of "becoming a girl child", which is the most fundamental of the minoritaire conditions necessary for the realization of the concept of "becoming" put forward by Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, and has a great importance in how the world is perceived. This article will evaluate how "becoming", a philosophical and theoretical concept, is reflected in Raymond Queneau's literary work Zazie in the Metro within the framework of Deleuze and Guattari's philosophical theory, and will try to reveal the different meanings added by the image of girl child.
Keywords: child / Zazie / Metro / adults / girl / character / Raymond Queneau / literary

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