Camille Laurens

September 2017, Exact Dates TBD

Camille Laurens is a French author who received the Prix Femina, Prix Renaudot des Lycéens, and Le Prix Bourgogne de Littérature. Some of her early works include Index, Romance, and Les Travaux d’Hercule. Eventually Laurens would delve into autofiction or as she refers to it, écriture de soi, which includes her novels Dans ces bras-là, and L’amour. Currently Camille Laurens sits on the jury for the Prix Femina. She is also an Officier de l'ordre des Arts et des Lettres.

Who You Think I Am

Other Press, 2017

Translated from the French by Adriana Hunter

This Psychological thriller dissects online relationships, offering a stunning indictment of the way society perceives women in contrast to men when age comes into play.

This is the story of Claire Millecam, a forty-eight-year-old teacher and divorcée who creates a fake social media profile to keep tabs on Joe, her occasional, elusive, and inconstant lover. Under the false identity of Claire Antunes, a young and beautiful twenty-four-year-old, she starts a correspondence with Chris—pseudonym KissChris—which soon turns into an Internet love affair.

Dangerous Liaisons for our times, Who You Think I Am exposes the disconnect between fantasy and reality. Social media allows us to put ourselves on display, to indulge in secrets, but above all to lie, to recreate a life, to become our own fiction—magnifying and manipulating the double standards to which older women are held when they refuse to give up on desire.

Simultaneously sensual, intellectually stimulating, and utterly relevant, this page-turner will stick in your mind long after reading.

Proposed lectures

L'amour et le roman: le triomphe du virtuel

Love and imagination have always been linked, whether you project your own desire on the object of your love or whether you try to seduce it by presenting yourself like an ideal person: when one loves, one always tells a story. Virtual communication, social networks like Facebook exacerbate the possibility of wearing a mask and of yeilding to the fantasy temptations of a new identity, of a new existence. The novel, which always requires the reader to ahere to a fiction, is the form suited to depict the illusions created by these new forms: the novel also reinvents itself; it attemps to rewrite Les Liaisons dangereuses and to render "marivaudage" contemporary. But from the 18th century right to our days, don't women remain the principal victims of these cruel games?

Themes linked to my novel: feminism, virtual and real life, architecture of the novel.

TO BOOK AN EVENT WITH THE AUTHOR

Note that we have limited funding available for our tours. Please let us know if you would be able to arrange for domestic travel to/from the event. If you would like to invite this author to speak at your university or bookstore, please fill out the application form and email it to Alix de Cazotte at Alix.decazotte@diplomatie.gouv.fr.