Barbara Fraipont (1988) studied Modern Languages and Literatures (English, Dutch and German) at the Université Catholique de Louvain (Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium) and at Lancaster University (UK). Since 2011 she has been working as a teaching assistant in Dutch Literature at the Université Catholique de Louvain (UCL), where she is writing a PhD dissertation with the title ‘Humaniteit uw naam is dier’ (Humanity your name is animal). Zoopoetical and -political configurations in the work of Charlotte Mutsaers.
On the basis of conceptual frameworks in the fields of cultural and literary animal studies, and of post-structuralist thought (Deleuze, Derrida, Agamben), Barbara's research explores how human-animal questions and reversals are mediated and reflected in the artistic work of the Dutch contemporary writer Charlotte Mutsaers (1942-), with attention to her essays, novels, poetry and paintings. It attempts to show how Mutsaers’ playful and aesthetic depictions of animals and human-animal affinities are interrelated with an antispeciesist discourse.
As Mutsaers often refers in her writing and visual art both to other writers (such as Franz Kafka, J.M. Coetzee) and to popular art forms (e.g. Walt Disney and Jean de la Fontaine’s fables), this PhD research adopts a comparative and multilingual approach and analyses how Mutsaers’ work rewrites and reworks former storylines in ways that reflect shifting eco-philosophical perspectives on the animal issue.
Selected Publications in English:
Fraipont, Barbara, ‘Vort paard, hu!’: Charlotte Mutsaers’ animal writing through Kafka’s animal stories, Journal of Dutch Literature (Amsterdam): 7 (2016) 2: 35-50.
Other Publications see: https://uclouvain.be/fr/repertoires/barbara.fraipont