Annie Ernaux was an unknown secondary level teacher of French when she sent her first manuscript to the prestigious Parisian publisher Gallimard. It was immediately accepted, and her autobiographical novel, Les armoires vides [Cleaned Out], was published in 1974. Through colourful, dense and at times violent language, it depicts the emotional dimensions (guilt, anger, shame) of a move from working-class to middle class culture through education. This theme is developed in still greater depth in subsequent works, and Ernaux makes a highly original contribution to contemporary literature by addressing social class and its intersections with gender and sexuality through an …

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Thomas, Lyn. "Annie Ernaux". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 09 February 2010
[, accessed 25 May 2015.]

Articles on Ernaux's works

  1. La place [A Man's Place]