ABSTRACT

From the performed to the materialised In 1930, Claude Cahun published Aveux non Avenus, a lengthy collection of diverse texts and photomontages. Taken together, these poetic verses, succinct aphorisms, fragmentary statements and complex images operate as a form of autobiography under erasure, articulating an active, desiring female subject and yet never finally determining ‘her’. Transgressing genre borders, as this work does, is a common strategy in women’s erotic writing, since established literary forms are not usually conducive to the enunciation of women’s desire as positive and particular.1 Cahun was ideally placed to utilise such a transgressive strategy to interpellate her desiring ‘self’ between texts, images, body and discourse in Aveux, given the wider remit of her artistic practice during the 1920s.