A controversial figure of the postwar French literary and cultural scene, Marguerite Duras has exerted a powerful hold on readers around the world. This volume of interviews—hailed on its French publication as Duras’s “secret confession”—offers readers a rich vein of new insight into her work, opinions, life, and relationships.
The interviews that make up the book were conducted in 1987, when Italian journalist Leopoldina Pallotta della Torre met the seventy-three-year-old Duras at her Paris flat and convinced her to sit for a series of conversations. The resulting book was published in Italian in 1989, but it somehow failed to attract a French publisher, and it was quickly forgotten. Nearly a quarter of a century later, however, the book was rediscovered and translated into French, and, it has now become a sensation. In its revealing pages, Duras speaks with extraordinary freedom about her life as a writer, her relationship to cinema, her friendship with Mitterand , her love of Chekhov and football, and, perhaps most significantly, her childhood in pre-war Vietnam, the experiences that propelled her most famous novel, The Lover.
A true literary event, finally available in English, The Suspended Passion is a remarkable document of an extraordinary literary life.