Laurent Binet
The Seventh Function of Language


Paris, 1980. The philosopher and literary critic Roland Barthes dies in a hospital room after a car accident: but was it an accident at all or he was murdered? Among the suspects are the entire intellectual elite of Europe in the second half of the XX century - Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Gilles Deleuze, Julia Kristeva, as well as the partisans from the “Red Brigades” and a certain secret society… The killers’ possible goal is a manuscript on the seventh, magical function of language , written by the linguistics guru Roman Jacobson. The secret’s owner will be able to influence the human mind, which means to own the entire world: be elected, provoke revolutions, seduce. As the story plays out in the crucial months of the election campaign, we understand the spheres to which the possible hirer of the crime belongs... “`The Seventh’s Function of Language”, written by the Prix Goncour nominee Laurent Binet, can be considered both as a parody of detective and spy novels, and as a tricky puzzle for readers looking for a connection between fiction and reality. In both ways the author’s ability to operate with styles and cultural codes, balancing between mass and elite literature, will not leave anyone indifferent. The novel was awarded the Prix du roman Fnac and the Prix Interallié and has been translated into thirty languages. The book’s print run in France was 200.000 copies.

ISBN 978-5-89059-378-8