The End of Eddy by Édouard Louis

A sensation in his native France, The End of Eddy is an unflinching depiction of poverty, racism and homophopia in the rural north of France

The End of Eddy

...it’s not like I’m for killing them or hanging them or putting them in camps like your dad is

So my father left. It must have been something he had often dreamed of doing. He imagined that down there the sun would make factory life more bearable, that the women there would be prettier. He left. He tried to find work in Toulon. My mother: He tried finding work as a barman but I imagine he spent more time at the bar drinking than actually asking for work. I don’t know if he maybe traded odd jobs for things, or what really went on, cause your dad isn’t exactly talkative, but I know he lived with an old lady. An old lady with lots of money. A Mormon if I remember right.

During his trip he had become friends with a young troublemaker (my mother said: a pick-pocketer; she was always mispronouncing things) who went by the name of Snow, an ironic nickname given his dark Maghrebi complexion. They became extremely close, spent all their nights together, and the pair of them would go out to pick up women. For a few months they were inseparable, but then my father came back north, for reasons my mother didn’t know. His past caught up with him, as if despite his best efforts there was no way to escape. This was something my mother didn’t understand: So that’s why your dad never talks about this stuff, his trip when he lived down south, because it’s pretty strange, it don’t make sense, when he says we should kill all the ragheads but then when he lived in the Midi his best mate was a raghead. I’m telling you this because I can’t figure out why your dad is such a racist, cause I’m not, even if it’s true the Arabs and the blacks get away with everything, and the government spends way too much money on them so there’s less for us, but still it’s not like I’m for killing them or hanging them or putting them in camps like your dad is.

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