Techno-rationalities and the motherhood trilogy of Fabrice Hadjadj::Beyond the reaches of Kaufmann’s médico-religieux


Vincent Kaufmann’s Ménage à trois: littérature, médecine, religion (2007) sets up the category of the médico-religieux as a tool to understand the intersection of medicine and religion within French literature. This article aims to contest this paradigm, not only in the spirit of Felski’s hostility to the hermeneutics of suspicion (2015) but also because Kaufmann’s account of the religious is too dependent on a Weberian model of the instrumental-rational and thereby insensitive to patterns of religious self-understanding. To illustrate and deepen this objection to Kaufmann’s notion of the medico-religious, the article offers a reading of three plays by Fabrice Hadjadj, contemporary France’s most prolific Catholic author, especially by using the concept of the theandric encounter (a meeting of the divine and the human) which is sensitive to the possibility of the value-rational in a medico-religious imaginary but does not exclude the instrumental-rational. Massacre des innocents (2006), Pasiphaé (2008) and Jeanne et les posthumains (2014) all evoke in different ways elements of the medico-religious, including the evasion of pain and the instrumental uses of religion. Nevertheless, they also attempt to articulate an axis of the imagination that traverses the purely instrumental through experiences of religion that are epiphanic and transformational.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: ?? 75153200Jl ??
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities > Centre for Language Research at Aston (CLaRA)
?? 29721300Jl ??
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in Modern & Contemporary France on 23 April 2020, available online at:
Uncontrolled Keywords: Fabrice Hadjadj,techno-rationalities,medico-religious,Catholic literature,theatre,Cultural Studies,History,Sociology and Political Science
Publication ISSN: 1469-9869
Last Modified: 16 Jul 2024 07:15
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2020 12:17
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Related URLs: https://www.tan ... rnalCode=cmcf20 (Publisher URL)
http://www.scop ... tnerID=8YFLogxK (Scopus URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2020-12-01
Published Online Date: 2020-04-23
Accepted Date: 2020-04-01
Authors: Sudlow, Brian (ORCID Profile 0000-0002-9939-6986)



Version: Accepted Version

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