Philosophie Dans Le Boudoir Critique Essay

Posted on by Akim

Que dire de ce livre si ce n'est que les protagonistes feraient mieux de parler moins et de s'envoyer en l'air plus !

Ben oui, durant les moments de "pause" entre deux sodomies ou autre pénétrations en "al", les protagonistes pérorent sur Dieu, la politique, la morale et autres sujets qui m'ont fait bailler d'ennui tant ces messieurs étaient sûr de détenir la Vérité Absolue. La diatribe sur la non-existence de Dieu est à mourir d'ennui !

Désolée, mais durant les phases réfractaires de chouchou, je n'aurais pas du tout envie de l'entendre me parler de politique ou de religion ! Surtout que Sade y va quand même fort dans sa philosophie qui tient plus de celle "du comptoir" que d'ailleurs.

Oh pardon... Pour ceux qui aurait une cul-ture zéro, " La philosophie dans le boudoir ou Les instituteurs immoraux", c'est l'histoire de la journée d'éducation sexuelle et de débauche de la jeune Eugenie, 15 ans au compteur, que madame de Saint-Ange et son frère incestueux vont initier a toutes les facettes du sexe par tous les orifices.

C'est "la journée de la luxure", le tout aidé d'un sodomite qui cause beaucoup trop : Dolmancé. Plus un syphilitique, mais en fin de roman.

En deux mots : ça éduque la gamine, ça baise tous ensemble ou séparé, ça cause et ensuite, ça refornique par tous les trous qui existent.

Les scènes de sexe ? C'est de la resucée : un "sandwich" entre trois hommes, de l'inceste frère-soeur, de la sodomie en veux-tu-en-voilà, du "décalotage" et suçage en tout genre. Rien de neuf sous le soleil, si ce n'est la perversion de certaines histoires où Dolmancé parle d'un homme qui a des rapports sexuels avec sa fille, lui fait un enfant, le dépucelle aussi, etc... Sade voulait choquer, il l'a fait.

Par contre, peu de descriptions dans les scènes de sexe. Certes, pour l'époque, ça a dû choquer la ménagère de moins de 50 ans, mais maintenant, bof. J'ai lu des fan-fics cochonnes bien plus détaillées dans leur scène hot que celles du roman du Marquis !

Ce que je reproche d'autre au livre ? Les dialogues qui sont souvent à se taper la tête au mur tant ils peuvent être bêtes, parfois.

Pire, lors de la fameuse scène de couture (ceux qui ont lu comprendront, les autres, imaginez), la mère - qui est censée avoir très mal vu l'endroit où on la coud - ne hurle pas très fort sa douleur, c'est limite si on n'a pas l'impression d'une mauvaise actrice qui veut en faire trop : "Tu me déchires, scélérate ! Que je rougis de t'avoir donné l'être !".

Heu, on est en train de lui suturer un certain endroit... Ça ne m'a même pas collé de frissons de dégoût tant cela ne faisait "pas vrai", ses récriminations de douleur.

Sans parler que les dialogues sont présentés comme dans une pièce de théâtre, et là, ça ne passait pas, malgré la vaseline.

De plus, une gamine de 15 ans qui se fait débaucher l'arrière-train sans arrières-pensées, comme si on lui expliquait la cuisine, demandant qu'on la débauche fissa... Là, je tique un peu en raison du fait qu'elle devient une grosse cochonne en deux secondes chrono.

N'ayant jamais vu un vit de sa vie (vit = pénis), elle se fait prendre par derrière comme d'autre vont prendre un verre, criant même qu'on la lui fourre profond. Hop, ça glisse comme chez une vielle péripatéticienne. Pas très réaliste.

Les personnages sont parfois à tuer, surtout Dolmancé, qui, à force de crier "je décharge, je décharge", m'a pompé l'air !

Je termine "No shocking" par le livre, ayant juste ressenti de l'ennui profond, mais très profond !

Marquis, tu aurais pu détailler plus tes scènes au lieu de nous faire toujours le même scénario sexuel !

Lien : http://the-cannibal-lecteur...

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Sade criticism has a long and colourful history dating back to the 1790s when Citoyen Sade published anonymously his shocking bestseller, Justine, ou les Malheurs de la vertu, and its even more scandalous sequels, La Nouvelle Justine and L'Histoire de Juliette. However, it was not until the 1920s that his work really began to be taken seriously by writers, artists, and philosophers.1 The post-1945 period in particular has seen an exponential growth in critical work, accompanied by a fascination with the Marquis's eventful life. More than twenty biographical studies on Sade, many in English, have been published since the 1960s.2 Some of these are less sympathetic to their subject than others: Bongie's is a good example of a well-researched and argued biography that is highly critical of its subject, while Du Plessix Gray's tends to present Sade in a more favourable light. And since the early 1970s many editions of letters between Sade and his family, friends, and lawyers have appeared, which have only increased interest in his life and loves.3 The relatively recent discovery of correspondence between the Marquis and his sister-in-law, Anne-Prospère de Launay, with whom he had a tempestuous affair in his late twenties, is an important addition to the corpus of correspondence.4 These letters reveal for the first time the depth of the couple's mutual love, and the astonishing news that Sade made an attempt on his own life as a result of their separation. The Sade that emerges from this correspondence is a fiercely romantic young man, capable of extremes of love and déception amoureuse — in short, a romantic hero worthy of Constant or Chateaubriand.5

As the private letters and published biographies illustrate, Sade is a divisive figure. Indeed, for David Coward he is a cultural myth: an ancestral folk hero to anti-conformists, and a bogeyman to defenders of moral values and social structures.6 It is unsurprising, then, that over the decades the morally judgemental approach in criticism has never really disappeared. Andrea Dworkin, for instance, condemns Sade for representing women as sex objects.7 Other female critics, taking their cue from Simone de Beauvoir's famous early essay,8 have published more sympathetic readings. Notable among these are Béatrice Didier, Nancy K. Miller, Angela Carter, and Jane Gallop.9 Annie Le Brun, co-editor with Jean-Jacques Pauvert of his 1980s edition of the Œuvres complètes,10 is notable for adopting an overtly and aggressively antifeminist stance, her overall aim being to put the body back into the text.11

In counterpoint to these more partisan readings, structuralist criticism focused exclusively on the text as a linguistic object, thus avoiding moral issues. Roland Barthes, for instance, famously read Sade's works as a closed universe of discourse.12 Philippe Roger, Marcel Hénaff, Joan DeJean, Michel Delon, and others have, in effect, continued Barthes's approach, analysing the narrative as a fictitious construct.13 And most recently of all, Jean-Christophe Abramovici's homage to Sade follows the Barthesian tradition in focusing on key motifs and linguistic features.14 In so doing, Abramovici's absorbing analysis shows that Barthes's theoretical, language-centred approach can still prove illuminating.

Of course, not all of Sade's works have enjoyed the same degree of critical attention. His eighteen plays represent a significant body of writing, including examples of all the principal genres of eighteenth-century theatre (comedy, drama, melodrama, and tragedy), and yet there have been relatively few critical studies of this important corpus, with only two major books on the subject. Sylvie Dangeville refutes the conventional view of a clear and uncrossable divide between Sade's libertine or obscene novels and his ‘respectable’ writings, into which latter category the plays fall, convincingly representing all of his output as a unified whole, driven by the overriding Sadian dynamic of desire.15 Focusing on the role of the spectator, Thomas Wynn also argues convincingly for the re-examination of Sade's neglected theatrical output.16

By contrast, Sade's libertine novels, which finally achieved the status of classical literature in the 1990s by being published in the prestigious Pléiade series,17 have attracted much more critical attention, especially the three versions of Justine (Les Infortunes de la vertu; Justine, ou les Malheurs de la vertu; La Nouvelle Justine). Raymond Giraud's early brief essay on Les Infortunes de la vertu remains insightful, while more recently Will McMorran has made a valuable contribution to scholarship on this text in connection with its later versions.18 Jean-Marc Kehrès's meticulously close reading of Sade's Justine, ou les Malheurs de la vertu may also inspire the semiotically inclined.19 Informed mainly by Greimasian semiotics and Genettian analytical models, this study seeks to lay bare the linguistic devices that Sade deploys to present rhetoric as truth, focusing on contradictions inherent as much in Justine's defensive strategies as in the arguments of the libertines. La Nouvelle Justine has attracted little critical interest on its own, although a number of studies on the ‘Justine’ saga, regardless of version, are intertextual and offer new insights into the inspiration and genesis of the tale in its three incarnations.20

L'Histoire de Juliette and Les Cent Vingt Journées de Sodome have appeared to present a more daunting challenge to critics. In a major psychoanalytically inspired study Lucienne Frappier-Mazur has read L'Histoire de Juliette in terms of an anal-phallic sexuality,21 while Joachim von der Thüsen and David McCallam have focused on the depiction and functions of the volcano in the text.22 And the few studies devoted to Les Cent Vingt Journées de Sodome have tended to focus on the text's innovative form and narrative structure.23

La Philosophie dans le boudoir has been considerably more popular with critics than the longer novels. Though not of recent date, Lynn Hunt's astute reading of this text in terms of Freud's family romance and the Oedipus complex still has its place in any discussion of Sade and the Revolutionary period.24 With recourse to psychoanalytical and structuralist theories, Hunt brilliantly demonstrates how Sade's most overtly political text is dominated by the absence of the father and an obsession with the mother. Two recent essays address, respectively, the paratext of this work and the displacement of violence from inside the boudoir to outside in the Revolution, while Maurice Blanchot's reading of the intercalated pamphlet, ‘Français, encore un effort si vous voulez être républicains’, is still seminal.25

Of the remaining novels, by far the most popular among critics is the epistolary Aline et Valcour, interest in which has increased with the growth of postcolonial studies over the last couple of decades.26

The short stories appear to have attracted less critical attention than Sade's other fictions. Philippe Seminet's innovative reading of the conventionally written contes Les Crimes de l'amour presents them as a key to a better understanding of the obscene writings, while Katherine Astbury makes a plausible and well-argued case for reading these Rabelaisian short stories as reversals of the sentimental tale.27 Sade's early ‘Dialogue entre un prêtre et un moribond’ is still largely neglected.28 And similarly, La Marquise de Gange and Isabelle de Bavière have aroused relatively little critical interest.29 Whatever their literary qualities, though, the historical novels still pose an unanswered critical challenge: why the turn to history towards the end of Sade's life?

Notable among recent textual approaches to Sade are the three major studies published in the last decade that focus on Sade's use of language.30 Before these, critics had tended to focus on aspects of style outside the purely erotic or pornographic, associated rather with Sade's rhetorical aims.31 It is perhaps surprising, however, that there have been few studies of black comedy or of the topos of imprisonment in Sade, subjects unconnected except by their relative neglect.32

Intertextual approaches have tended over the decades to focus on eighteenth-century literature and thought, linking Sade with Laclos, Rousseau, Diderot, and Rétif de la Bretonne.33 Scholars of nineteenth-century French literature, too, have found Sadian themes in Baudelaire and Flaubert, both of whom read Justine avidly and were greatly affected by it.34 It may be thought surprising, though, given the surrealists' fascination with Sade, that very little has been written concerning the connection between them.35 On the other hand, scholars of twentieth-century literature have readily found Sadian themes and forms in the works of Apollinaire, Beckett, Camus, Duras, Houellebecq, Kafka, and Nabokov.36 And film scholars interested in the links between Sade and cinema have focused not simply on Pier Paolo Pasolini's Salò (1975),37 but also on the Sadian in films by Buñuel and Greenaway.38

Sade's political works have been readily available since 1957.39 However, it was not until the 1980s that critics began to write in earnest about the political aspects of his writing, with a particular emphasis on his activities during the Revolution. Michel Delon provides a concise and informative survey of these, as well as a more focused essay on Revolutionary pamphlets.40 The political in Sade criticism has also been intertextually related to other writers.41 More contentiously, Philippe Roger argues that Sade cannot be identified with any particular political position.42

With regard to Sade's philosophical ideas, a number of studies have anchored these in different ways in their eighteenth-century context. Geoffrey Bennington and David Martyn have adopted a particularly striking Kantian perspective.43 Caroline Warman shows clearly how Sade based his fictional writings on the philosophy of materialism current in eighteenth-century France.44 She reviews the Marquis's borrowings from the materialist philosophers, persuasively demonstrating that he literalizes their imagery and recycles their thought to appeal in unmediated fashion to the reader's sexual instincts. Adopting a polar opposite approach, François Ost's analysis disregards the material aspects of the text, offering instead a complex and elegantly written appraisal of Sade's moral and ethical stance, measured against Enlightenment conceptions of the law. Ost concludes that, while rejecting the social contract and the personal sacrifice that it necessitates, Sade substitutes his own law, one that is categorical in both a Kantian and a broadly religious sense.45 What skews the perspective somewhat is Ost's conviction that, in spite of his repeated declarations of atheism, Sade remains within a sacred dimension, going beyond what other critics, notably Pierre Klossowski, have termed a negative theology, to embrace evil as an absolute. This relatively sympathetic reading is taken much further by Michel Brix and Jean-Baptiste Jeangène Vilmer, who argue that Sade was actually a champion of virtue.46 At the same time, it can be reasonably argued that Sade was a champion of sexual liberty. Indeed, as William F. Edmiston has recently demonstrated, in justifying homosexual activities as both natural and ineradicable, Sade's infringements of sexual and moral taboos and his defence of such infringements anticipate modern discourses of queer theory.47

Reading Sade's work as championing the sexual body, Armelle St-Martin's recent book focuses on the relationship between Sade's fictions — La Philosophie dans le boudoir, L'Histoire de Juliette, and La Nouvelle Justine — and the medical practices of his time, as viewed through the prism of materialist philosophers of the period, especially La Mettrie, of vitalist anthropologists such as La Caze and Ménuret de Chambaud, and of contemporary works on anatomy, notably those by Albrect von Haller.48 Other studies have addressed the representation of eighteenth-century medical knowledge and practice in Sade's texts. Mary McAlpin, for example, focusing on vitalist theories of the body, argues that Sade bases his representations of the libertine corruption of women on such theories, supporting his contention that cultural degradation is the will of nature.49 Thus, in Justine, ou les Malheurs de la vertu and La Philosophie dans le boudoir, adolescent girls are seen to be subjected to sexual violence when they are most vulnerable to its deleterious effects. Sean Quinlan, too, has made a valuable contribution to the biomedical aspects of Sade's writing.50 For Quinlan, the libertines of L'Histoire de Juliette maintain that they can achieve physical and mental ecstasy only by raising their senses to a transcendent level of experience where anything is possible. Criminal acts are the sole means of attaining these altered states of consciousness, inducing ecstatic experiences, which others have associated with mysticism and trance.

Tangentially related to the texts' representations of medicine and biology is critical interest in violence in Sade. David McCallam, for instance, explores to what degree the guillotine inspires the various instruments of erotic torture that appear in La Philosophie dans le boudoir and La Nouvelle Justine and the rationale behind such representations.51 His essay offers convincing reasons for the apparent contradiction between, on the one hand, Sade's defence of murder as a natural act, and, on the other, his condemnation of the state's use of the guillotine as a crime. Murder manifestly occurs in nature, largely in response to instinctual drives, yet this does not justify the glorification of state-sanctioned homicide in civilized society. In this vein it is interesting to note that Michel Onfray's hostile reading of Sade — echoing post-war approaches by Albert Camus and Raymond Queneau, both of whom were highly critical of Sade from an ethical and moral perspective52 — offers a salutary reminder for sadistes that the apparently amoral depictions of extreme violence and murder in the novels may still invite comparison with the worst excesses of twentieth-century history.53

And perhaps, finally, it is the sadistes themselves — the Marquis's readers — who are coming to the fore in modern critical approaches to Sade. Will McMorran, for instance, argues that, in contrast to some of their female counterparts such as Jane Gallop or Chantal Thomas, Sade's male critics have seemed reluctant to talk about the pornographic effects of his fiction on themselves as readers, especially the violence.54 McMorran's essay examines this violence not just as a matter of words on a page, but as voices and sounds heard and images seen by the reader. Would we as readers identify these as our own, as those of the narrator, or as those of the author? Does the voice change according to the gender of the character — and of the reader? If it is the reader who speaks, and not language, as Barthes famously asserted,55 what exactly is the reader saying, and what conclusions can be drawn with regard to this reader's ethical and moral positioning by Sade's text? It seems appropriate, in this bicentenary year, to reflect that the death of the divin marquis gives new life to his œuvre, further new readings of which are sure to emerge over the next two hundred years.56

© The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for French Studies. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com

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