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Médée Miracle

by Tonino De Bernardi

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Irène, is a current day representation of Medea, a heroine from Greek mythology. She abandons her homeland to marry Jason, a Frenchman. They settle in Paris’ banlieu and have two daughters and eventually become the owners of a bistrot-boite. Her strong feelings of being out of place and her guilt for turning her back on her homeland finally drive Jason into the arms of a Frenchwoman who is socially more acceptable and who is mayor of Pantin’s daughter. Irène remains alone with her her daughters and Martha, a young speech impaired girl whom she had brought with her from home and to whom she is very close. To avenge herself against Jason, she betrays him with the clients of the bistrot until her loose conduct finally leads her loses her daughter. She ends up on the brink of madness caught in a maze of obsessions but she does not kill children and rivals like the Medea of mythology, but rather inflicts violence on herself until she succumbs to a devastating nervous breakdown. Martha’s intervention saves her. The life of the two women changes radically: they seek refuge in the country and little by little Irène is reborn as she begins to show an interest in herself and in others.

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