Serge Doubrovsky coined the term in 1977 with reference to his novel Fils. Philippe Vilain distinguishes autofiction from autobiographical novels in that autofiction requires a first-person narrative by a protagonist who has the same name as the author. Autofiction combines two mutually inconsistent narrative forms, namely autobiography and fiction. An author may decide to recount his/her life in the third person, to modify significant details or 'characters', using fiction in the service of a search for self. It has parallels with faction, a genre devised by Truman Capote to describe his novel In Cold Blood.
Autofiction is principally a genre associated with contemporary French authors, among them: Vassilis Alexakis, Christine Angot, Emmanuel Carrère, Marguerite Duras, Guillaume Dustan, Annie Ernaux, Alice Ferney, Hervé Guibert, Édouard Louis, Amélie Nothomb, Olivia Rosenthal, and Anne Wiazemsky. Catherine Millet's 2002 memoir The Sexual Life of Catherine M. famously used autofiction to explore the author's sexual experiences.
In India, autofiction has been associated with the works of Hainsia Olindi and postmodern Tamil writer Charu Nivedita. His novel Zero degree, a groundbreaking work in Tamil literature and his recent Novel Marginal Man are examples of this genre. Japanese author Hitomi Kanehara wrote a novel titled Autofiction.
In Indian Urdu the fiction novels of Rahman Abbas are considered major work of autofiction, especially his two novels 'Nakhalistan Ki Talash' (Search of an Oasis) and 'Khuda Ke Saaye Mein Ankh Micholi' (Hide & Seek in the Shadow of God).
- Vilain, Philippe; Herman, Jeanine (2011). "AUTOFICTION". In Villa Gillet; Le Monde (eds.). The Novelist's Lexicon: Writers on the Words That Define Their Work. Columbia University Press. pp. 5–7. doi:10.7312/vill15080.9. ISBN 0231150806. JSTOR 10.7312/vill15080.9.
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