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April 14, 2017


Outside: papiers d’un jour

by N@ncy

  • Author: M Duras
  • Title: Outside: papiers d’un jour
  • Published: 1980
  • Language: French

April 10, 2017

  • First 12 stories: I liked only 3!
  • 6 stories had ‘no real point, message’….just blah, blah.
  • 2 stories were too academic…way over my head.
  • 1 story was disgusting (Paris abattoirs, animals) just stopped reading, jick!

April 11, 2017

  • 12 stories and I liked only 3! (about literature and politics)
  • 2: no point, Duras talks in circles (traffic policeman and
  • artist Jeanick Ducot)
  • 3: interviews: 2 with children and one adult (boring)
  • 2: description of Paris on 05 August 1958;  next story was
  • about her village Neauphle-le-Château
  • that has 1 café, 1 jukebox…and closes early.
  • 2: old woman visits same bar every night since 1914;
  • girl and boy walking home to metro. (so-so)

April 12, 2017

  • “I’ve read 30 stories….and am NOT impressed.
  • M. Duras does not excel in writing non-fiction.
  • Her fiction prose influenced by her exotic childhood in Gia-Dinh
  • (a former name for Saigon, Vietnam)…is much, much better.
  • I will put this book on the ‘back burner’ for a few days
  • and see if it is worth finishing.


  1. I read 40 stories of the 116 selections;
  2. Duras has the gift of  a snow-job.
  3. Her style is so fluent you think she will
  4. express great thoughts
  5. ….yet she just confuses the reader.
  6. Many stories I read were interviews.
  7. We hear Duras’s questions….but answers from
  8. children, hoodlums, criminals and a carmelite nun.
  9. Boring.
  10. Last thoughts:
  11. I don’t easily give up ….but it’s
  12. time to close this book…and move on.
Read more from French
3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Apr 14 2017

    Giving up sounds like a wise decision here even if it’s not the norm for you! And am intrigued – what’s a ‘snow-job’?!


    • Apr 14 2017

      Using a fluent style Duras is able to deceive or overwhelm (snow job) the reader….eveh though the article seems to have no point! I keep reading hoping I will understand her message….but it never happens. Having struggled through pages of French….I’m left empty handed! Thanks for you comments….and it is true, I do not give up easily!


      • Apr 14 2017

        I like that phrase – will copy that and shamelessly pass it off as my own!


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