Chéri, the novel by Colette tells a story of the end of a six-year affair between an aging retired courtesan, Léa, and a pampered young man, Chéri. Turning stereotypes upside-down, it is Chéri who wears silk pajamas and Léa's pearls, and who is the object of gaze. And in the end Léa demonstrates all the survival skills which Colette associates with femininity. (The story continued in The Last of Chéri (1926), which contrasts Léa's strength and Chéri's fragility and decline).
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