Françoise Mallet-Joris in 1988
6 July 1930 |
|Other names||Françoise Lilar|
Françoise Mallet-Joris (born 6 July 1930) is the nom de plume of Françoise Lilar, a Belgian writer.
She was born in Antwerp, the daughter of the writer Suzanne Lilar and the Belgian Minister of Justice and Minister of State Albert Lilar, and the sister of the 18th century art historian Marie Fredericq-Lilar. Mallet-Joris spent two years in the America before going to Paris, France, where she attended the Sorbonne. She currently lives in Paris and Brussels, Belgium.
She has been married to Robert Amadou, Alain Joxe and Jacques Delfau, and has four children, Daniel Amadou, and Vincent, Alberte and Pauline Delfau.
Mallet-Joris began her literary career early with the publication of Le rempart des Béguines in 1951. It was translated as The Illusionist. It is set in a town that resembles Mallet-Joris' native Antwerp and treats the themes of social class and lesbianism. She followed her first work with a sequel in 1955 named La chambre rouge, in English The Red Room. In it, she continued her treatment of social class and mores in Belgium.
Mallet-Joris' novels deal with interpersonal relationships and social class in France and Belgium. Often, characters must deal with disappointment as they realize they have unrealistic expectations. She also depicts social climbers and deceitful characters.
She has also written works of non fiction, like The Uncompromising Heart: A Life of Marie Mancini, Louis XIV's First Love in 1964, and she has written essays about her philosophy of life and writing in Lettre à moi-même (A Letter to Myself) in 1963 and La Maison de papier (The Paper House) in 1970.
Mallet-Joris won the "Librarians' Prize" (Prix des bibliothécaires) in 1958 for House of Lies (in French, the title was Les mensonges which means simply "Lies"), the Femina Prize in 1958 for Café Céleste (in French, it was called L'empire céleste which means "Heavenly Empire" or "Celestial Empire", a title that is highly ironic) and the Monaco Prize in 1964 for her biography of Marie Mancini.
|French literary history|
Below is a partial listing of her books.
- 1951: Le rempart des Béguines (2006 translation by Herma Briffault as The Illusionist, published by Cleis Press with introduction by Terry Castle. Previous translations had been titled Into the Labyrinth or The Loving and the Daring)
- 1955: La chambre rouge (The Red Room)
- 1958: Cordélia (a collection of short stories);
- 1966: Les signes et les prodiges (Signs and Wonders)
- 1968: Trois âges de la nuit (The Witches)
- 1973: Le jeu du souterrain (The Underground Game)
- 1976: Allegra
- 1978: Jeanne Guyon (a biography)
- 1980: Dickie-Roi
- 1985: Le rire de Laura (Laura's Laugh)
- 1990: Adriana Sposa
- 1993: Divine
- 1993: Les Larmes
- Jean-Louis de Rambures, "Comment travaillent les écrivains", Paris 1978 (interview with F. Mallet-Joris, in French)