“Radio is also a form of writing”

Marie Richeux, producer of the show “Le Book Club” on France Culture.

She has been delighting the radio for twelve years. After “No need to shout”“Les Nouvelles Vagues” and “Par les temps qui cournt”, Marie Richeux inherited, in this return to France Culture, the “Book Club” – which Nicolas Herbeaux produced at 12:50 p.m. and now installed from Monday to Friday at 3 p.m. hours.

Do you remember learning to read?

I remember my first grade teacher, and the reading method: Ratus and his friends (Editions Hatier). I remember the day when I was able to read all the tens and units on the board: it was as if the ability to decipher the world had taken on a new light with mathematics. I have memories of reading shared with my parents, before bed, and which I reproduce with my own children. I remember, after the baccalaureate, the discovery, on a table in the media library of my city, in Meudon-la-Forêt, in the Paris suburbs, in Hauts-de-Seine, of books of so-called contemporary literature, and I remember I didn’t know what it was. But it was gone.

I remember the covers of Editions de midnight. From those of Verticales. I remember reading Duras a lot when I arrived at France Culture – I was 21 years old. If I jump back in time a little, another reading was fundamental: that of Faulkner and his August light. I also remember my great emotion at reading The Lighthouse Walk, by Virginia Woolf. More recently, from the encounter with the books of Deborah Levy. The emotional shock that reading the works of Jakuta Alikavazovic gives me. In contemporary literature, she is one of the authors whose texts I await, like those of Lola Lafon, Sylvain Prudhomme. And so many others.

What relationship do you have with reading?

At the moment, I have a work relationship, which does not abolish the pleasure. If I can, I like to read shortly before the show to keep the feeling extremely fresh. I’m more of a forgetful reader: I have trouble remembering the plots, but I have a memory of the impression the books left on me.

And on the radio?

I remember this day, I must have been 19 years old, when I heard Dominique Fourcade on the microphone of Pascale Casanova (disappeared in 2018) on France Culture. I see myself stopping what I’m doing, turning up the volume and listening to this man. Magic triangle between the power of radio, the power of speech and the power of a poetic work, that of Dominique Fourcade, which I have never stopped reading.

After three weeks of “Book Club”, what can you say about it?

I thought that I was going to miss leaving the multidisciplinarity, to which I was attached after twelve years of daily broadcasts. And, in fact, what I feel is above all a lot of joy, of jubilation.

Is there a political dimension to having demanding authors heard at length on public service radio, and sometimes in the original version?

To the extent that we are in the public service, there is no politics in the partisan sense, but there is perhaps a politics in the space we give to thought, especially when we see how, in France and elsewhere, critical spaces are weakened today. I am attached to speech, to the fact that, when we speak, we say things that we care about, that have meaning. And I have the impression that doing radio and doing it close to the texts is also a way of saying that the words we choose are important.

You are yourself an author, published by Sabine Wespieser, what does that change?

I think that I have made a very strong and definitive place in my life first for writing. And radio is also a form of writing.

Read the interview with Delphine Coulin and Marie Richeux: Article reserved for our subscribers “Talking about women who have taken very small steps aside”

In what way?

Ask yourself the question of the introduction, the credits, the place of the archives, the music: I love thinking about it with my team. After the one-on-one interview (“Par les temps qui cours”), I wanted to do more collective radio. This is also why I wanted to open the show with, in particular, lighting by Emmanuel Laurentin, on Monday; and, on Wednesdays, make way for children’s literature with Mathilde Wagman, who conveys a fundamental enthusiasm for our children. Because it is at that moment that we establish a relationship with meaning, with story, with imagination.

Emilie Grangeray

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