Maria Maïlat: La cuisse de Kafka [Kafka’s Thigh]

The latest addition to my website is Maria Maïlat‘s La cuisse de Kafka [Kafka’s Thigh]. This is a semi-autobiographical novel. Her heroine is called Mina Baïlar. She is born in Transylvania, part Jewish, and has a not particularly easy childhood. However,she becomes first a gymnast and then a writer but the Romanian authorities ban her writing and she has to leave, and goes to Paris, determined to write in French and not about the political situation in Romania. She struggles with the usual problems of exile – housing, right to asylum, a different culture – but also how to be herself and not what the Romanian community want her to be. It is a fine, honest book about struggling to fit in a new environment.

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