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Book review: Édouard Louis sets the class society to justice

Last year, the dog 58 people at their jobs in Sweden. It is more than who died in the firings that got the politicians to demand stricter punishment, surveillance and more police officers. And somewhere here, perhaps, one of the most relevant dividing lines in political life – at the sight of violence. Not violence as a political means, but in the perception of the essence.

Yes, it is violence to shoot someone. But is it violence if the same man goes to work and never come home again? Is the violence there between a highly trained individual in Danderyd and a low in Vårby gård, not only separates the twenty or so metro stations, but also 18 years in life? Tell me how you respond and I'll tell you who you are, purely political.

Édouard Louis. Photo: Anette Nantell

in the mutilated life policies, as the French writer Édouard Louis begins his new novel. ”Who killed my father” moves in the same monotonous and brutal universe of the debut ”shake off the Eddy Bellegueule” from 2015, where hypermaskulinitet, poverty and hatred of the feminine to reinforce each other in a constant movement towards the bottom. This adds Louis puzzles with his father's fate and his broken body in something that results in a anklagelseakt against class society and its patrons. Perhaps such a discussion is finally gaining momentum also in Sweden, after Patrik Lundberg's loving essay about a struggling mother that she, too, died a very premature death (Expressen 14/4).

In the same moment that it counts as " violence that people are actually dying of exploitation and the brutal class politics of syndicalists created a compelling call to bring this to an end

When Jean Louis, after a long time visiting his father, he feels not recognize him. Here is a man just over fifty, who can barely walk, can barely breathe and have a heart that can hardly be beat. Louis returning for an episode in which the family receives a call that a load roller of dad at work, and that the back is now squashed and unusable.

the short life actually begins far earlier, but a striking way to tell it is undeniably through the short impact like Louis does in the cracked back policy. For the spring of 2006, the government decides Chirac namely, to stop subsidizing a wide range of drugs, including one Louis bedridden father needs for his digestion.

in 2009, making the government Sarkozy decision on a sort of carry insurance that forces the father to take his kinked back and say yes to a job as a street sweeper. 2016 pushing the government Hollande through a ”loi travail” that makes it easier to dismiss people and to force employees into overtime – so dad goes bent over the streets eight hours a day and can't breathe. In the autumn of 2017, lowers the government of Macros both social benefits for the poorest and taxes for the most wealthy, and then attacks the ”simple minds” which is considered to prevent reforms in the country. A year later put the yellow jackets Paris streets on fire.

Édouard Louis. Photo: Anette Nantell

Édouard Louis has established a private and loaded the style in the short format condensed prose, and clean berättartekniskt this becomes a strong and effective grip even here. Especially in the book's third part is an escalation that is difficult to resist, where political decisions, therefore, are linked to the individual parts of the body that falls apart and stops working. ”The story of your body is an indictment of the political history,” writes Louis and turns not only against the responsible politicians, but also against the ruling class who can afford to see politics as a purely ”aesthetic” activity.

a literary trial, which is more or less murders might need more words than can fit on less than ninety pages? The rhetorically elegant and emotionally stunning of Louis is simply not enough to give the topic the weight it deserves. I will myself to think that he, the difficult subject despite, has actually made it quite easy for themselves. How had this frequent and stålblanka the novel not been able to grow if it had received more conceptually meat in between the covers?

Louis has previously mentioned, the sociologist Didier Eribon and his autobiographical essay ”Back to Reims” (Verbal, 2018) as an important source of inspiration, and there are just Eribon with some scanty references to the name as Ruth Gilmore, Peter Handke, and Simone de Beauvoir. Anyway pulled the book with a certain degree of myopia and with a sense of not quite fulfilling its rich essäistiska potential. I wish simply to Édouard Louis in his third novel, had forced himself to do more to get ahead in his writing.

still, something crucial when he insists on talking about the class society in terms of a violence that takes the concrete human sacrifice. Violence as a phenomenon, carries on a morally compelling dimension that most others lack, in that it violates what comes closest to an ethical urprincip: not actively inflicting harm. In the same moment that it counts as " violence that people are actually dying of exploitation and the brutal class politics of syndicalists created a compelling call to get this to stop. And, therefore, is called the inequality rarely for violence in today's political climate. It's called freedom of choice.

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