Since his bestseller debut The End of Eddy Édouard Louis is one of the most-read French writers of the young generation. His second novel History of violence will probably be received in Poland in a different context than in France, where the accidental meeting between Édouard – a young Frenchman who left the conservative village to start a new life in Paris and Reda – a young Frenchman of Algerian origin; son of a refugee who fled Algeria, has different connotations. The paths that lead to this meeting are the paths of colonialism, brutal war, ghettos, unsuccessful assimilation process, bright unequal opportunities – these are bombs that explode easily, and so it happens here. But this is not the only content of this meeting – Louis rises above each of these divisions and desperately looks for a way to tell his "true" story , snatch it out of too easy socio-political categories and not give it to anyone who would like to simplify it. However, to make it possible, he must fight a special battle with himself – History of Violence is its record. It is a chaotic, battered attempt to remain faithful to one's beliefs, even if it means witnessing against one's own emotions and against one's own sense of harm. This is a difficult (and impressive) fight for a fair story. The starting point for this narrative universe is, however, something that cannot be told in Poland without red cheeks and political patches - homosexual romance. And rape.
And maybe you can't really tell the story of Louis in Poland (and that's why it should be told). In a country where we are at a point where any aberration from the strict identity standard is associated with state-sanctioned stigma. Effects? Surveys of social anxieties show that every third man in the 18-39 age group is above all afraid of "gender ideology" – more than a climate catastrophe (sic!), inefficient healthcare or growing nationalism. France, on the other hand, says Louis, sexual orientation is no longer a reason for harassment. At the same time, this does not mean that the hatred has disappeared – it is now channeling towards immigrants. So France – from the novel of Louis – is a country at the same time very distant to Poland – and in some aspects too close.
Director / Stage Design Ewelina Marciniak
Stage Design Grzegorz Layer
Costumes Natalia Mleczak
Live Music Wacław Zimpel
Lighting Mirek Kaczmarek
Digital Radar Ost
20 June 2020, 20.00–21.20 h
Introduction at 19.30 h
Virtual Room: Box
A digital guest performance of Fredro Theatre Gniezno/Polen as livestream
Michał Karczewski, Oskar Malinowski, Piotr Nerlewski, Roland Nowak, Martyna Rozwadowska, Dominik Rybiałek