The incredible Les femmes du lien is to be put in all hands!

The incredible Les femmes du lien is to be put in all hands!

With this beautiful book, combining documentary, comic strip and photo-novel, Vincent Jarousseau immerses us in the daily life of eight workers in the shadows – home help, family assistant, caregiver, childminder… – whose jobs are also essential than undervalued. A book with an uppercut effect!

Their names are Valérie, Marie-Basile, Rachel, Séverine, Julie, Marie-Ève, Angélique and Marie-Claude. They are social and family intervention technicians, home helpers, educational and social companions, social life assistants, specialized educators, family assistants, childminders and caregivers..

From cradle to grave, they accompany and take care of others, tirelessly weaving social ties despite the lack of means and recognition. And insufficient remuneration that often keeps them in precariousness. They are the heroines of The women of the linkthe incredible work of Vincent Jarousseau, published at the Arènes this week.

Of this photographer and documentary filmmaker, we had already devoured the Roots of anger (Les Arènes, 2019) – France Info prize for current affairs and reportage comics -, an incandescent book that told the France of the forgotten by mixing documentaries, comics and photo novels.

The women of the link, or the “real life” of essential workers

The women of the link uses the same hybrid format to capture “the real life of essential workers”. Of those who represent 1 in 4 working women, i.e. around 3 million working women, mainly from working-class backgrounds. Of those who are on the front line to accompany and help the Human being at different key moments of his life. And not necessarily the easiest.

If they were furtively brought to light during the health crisis, they quickly fell into the shadows. And this, despite the parliamentary report made in 2020 by the deputies François Ruffin and Bruno Bonnell on the trades of the link whose women represent more than 85% of the workforce, according to the author.

A photo novel in the daily lives of 8 women

For nearly two years, before and after the pandemic, Vincent Jarousseau met eight of them which are at the heart of so many chapters constituting this beautiful documentary book. Each one opens like a door to unknown universes. The author retraces the trajectories of these women thanks to the very beautiful comic strips signed Thierry Chavant before moving on to the photo novel which follows them at work, but also in their private lives.

We are immersed, from the north of France to Seine-Saint-Denis, in daily life as diverse as it is exhausting, made up of small victories and, sometimes, discouragement. Seized by the monumental energy that each of them deploys to try to meet the needs – even, anticipate them – of those they accompany; foster children, families in difficulty, the elderly, sick, disabled, lost or damaged…

Screenshot 2022-09-29 at 12.04.53
Screenshot 2022-09-29 at 12.05.14

One of the great successes of the author is never to sink into misery, angelism or generalities. But to let them speak. Because these women have things to tell and to teach us, on the fractures of society, the end of life, early childhood, the state of the social sector or the public hospital. Page after page, we also hear the voices of those they follow and who, despite the diversity of their situations, keep asking: “What would we do without you? “.

The women of the link: an uppercut book

Les femmes du lien is an uppercut book, necessary and moving, which resonates as a tribute to its eight heroines. But also to all those, invisible and invisibilized, who ultimately hold a good part of the social fabric of France at arm’s length. It is also a plea in favor of a better promotion of these professions, with feminist accents. Because how not to wonder about the correlation between the significant feminization of these professions and their lack of recognition… To buy or to offer therefore, urgently!

The women of the link, by Vincent Jarousseau, Les Arènes, 24.90

Read also :

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