twirlintwisting (twirlintwisting) wrote in linguaphiles,

Hello Linguaphiles,

As part of my finals, I'll have to sit through several oral exams next week, one of which is in French. As part of the exam I might be asked to interpret/summarize a French poem and this is where I have a small problem:

In German class we would often use the concept of "lyrisches Ich" when analyzing poems to separate the fictional speaker in the poem from the actual author. I've been snooping around on the internet and most of the French interpretations I have found don't seem to distinguish between a fictional speaker and the author. I'm nevertheless a bit paranoid about just assuming that the sentiments expressed in the poem are the author's personal sentiments, mostly because the importance of making this difference has been drilled into us, all through German class.

My question would be: Is it acceptable in literary interpretations in French to assume that thoughts expressed in an author's poetry are the author's personal opinions? If not, how would you formulate the difference for example when summarizing the poem? Simply using "Le narrateur..." seems strange in the context of talking about poetry.

Thanks in advance. Your help would be much appreciated

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