Comme un roman policier : Daniel Pennacs Malaussène-Serie als eine Spielart des Kriminalromans
The doctoral thesis 'Comme un roman policier: Daniel Pennacs Malaussène-Serie als Spielart des Kriminalromans' delivers a thorough analysis of a popular French series consisting of five novels which are rooted in crime literature. The contemporary French author Daniel Pennac makes a playful use of elements characteristic both of the detective novel als well as the thriller. Aspects of the analysis include the structure of the novels, techniques of narration, depiction of society, methods of detection and use of language. Based on René Girard's scapegoat-theory Pennac creates the tragicomic hero of Benjamin Malaussène. Besides the exceptional protagonist, the rest of the Malaussène-universe can be divided into a 'good' in-group and a 'bad' out-group. Pennac draws rough sketches of the characters by using stereotypes and the inversion of stereotypes. By these means Pennac reveals by which absurd and paradoxical mechanisms the contemporary Western society often works. Concerning the detection, the author does not stick to traditional methods, but extents the intruments of knowledge to the supernatural. Theses variations of detective novel and thriller regarding the contents are presented in an elaborated and metaphorical style which furthermore contains innumerable reflections on language and literature. The thesis concludes with a classification of Pennac's Malaussène-Saga within the frame of modern French as well as crime literature.