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Claude Cahun : l'exotisme intérieur - LEPERLIER François

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About the document

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  1. Childhood and teenage years
  2. Artistic starts
  3. Her sexual orientation and lesbian sociability in Paris
  4. Intellectual friendship and left-wing political engagement
  5. 1925-1930, Havelock Ellis, theatrical experiences and play with identities
  6. 1930-1933 : publication of Aveux non avenus
  7. 1933-1935 : political engagement
  8. 1932 - May 1938: Surrealism
  9. Les Paris sont ouverts (1934)
  10. 1934-1939
  11. Photographic work and posterity
  12. Photomontage, Objects, and Le Coeur de Pic
  13. Move in Jersey and beginning of WW2
  14. Resistance, arrest and trial during WW2
  15. Death

Claude Cahun was born Lucy Schwob in Nantes the 25th of October 1894, in an upper-class intellectual family. She is the daughter of Maurice Schwob, a republican, patriot, progressive and anticlerical man, who directed the newspaper Le Phare de la Loire, and of Marie Antoinette Courbebaisse. She is from a Jewish family, even if she did not believe in god. She had a brother, Georges, who was born in 1888. Her mother was hospitalised for psychiatric trouble when she was young. She suffered from the absence of her mother, considered as a shame by her family, which tried to hide the situation from the rest of the world.

In 1917, her father married Marie Eugénie Rondet, a widow, and the mother of Suzanne Malherbe, who will be the life-long partner of Claude Cahun.
Another important figure of her childhood was Marcel Schwob, her uncle, that she did not had time to meet, but who influenced her by his literature.
As she rejected maternity, children and even family, François Leperlier explains that she did not had a happy childhood.

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