Thérèse and Isabelle
This new edition presents Thérèse et Isabelle uncensored for the first time, with its rough, violent language, sign of the new freedom of speech that no woman in France dared to use prior to Violette Leduc. In 1948, with the support of Simone de Beauvoir, Violette Leduc began to write the emotional, physical and intellectual aspects of her homosexual love story, in terms as real and raw as the experience itself. Gallimard published Ravages in 1954, but without its first volume, Thérèse et Isabelle, which was cut for moral reasons by the editor. Even the most open minded of Leduc’s peers, including Simone de Beauvoir, understood why it was impossible to publish: it was too sincere, too truthful with regard to French society’s hypocritical consideration of lesbians at that time. This is the first time the entire text of that courageous work has been published, and it is not only a strong statement from a woman writer, but also a coherent and emotional love story, announcing Violette Leduc’s masterpiece, La Bâtarde.
Violette Leduc : Born in 1907, Violette Leduc is one of the wildest voices of French postwar society. Defended by Simone de Beauvoir who said of Leduc that she revealed the deepest, secret side of women, she wrote many novels and won great critical acclaim in 1964 for La Bâtarde (published in English by Riverhead in 1997).