The introduction to the book mentions new (to me) theoretical work on love and fetishism. First there is Max Dessoir (pseudonym Ludwig Brunn) and a 1888 essay entitled “The Fetichism of Love,” from which comes this clever quote:
“Normal love appears to us as a symphony of tones of all kinds. It is roused by the most varied agencies. It is, so to speak, polytheistic. Fetichism recognises only the tone-colour of a single instrument; it issues forth from a single motive; it is monotheistic.”
Here is a mini-review I wrote on February 17th of Feuchtgebiete:
I have started reading Feuchtgebiete. A very dry, cold and realistic style, almost devoid of poetics. The first page mentions an anal orgasm. There is a memorable scene where the protagonist and her friend take a great deal of drugs from a dealer-friend’s stash, later puke because it was too much, find that many of the pills had not been digested and drink their vomit all up again.
The Minotaur creature was the offspring of a certain Queen Pasiphae and a white bull. The myth goes thus: after one of Poseidon‘s angry spells which caused Pasiphae to be overcome with a fit of madness in which she fell in love with the bull, Pasiphae went to Daedalus for assistance, and Daedalus devised a way for her to satisfy her passions. He constructed a hollow wooden cow covered with cowhide for Pasiphae to hide in and allow the bull to mount her. The result of this union was the Minotaur.
“Vivian Parker, une star sublime et hautaine, rencontre Louis lors d’un festival de cinéma. Sans savoir pourquoi, elle lui donne son numéro de téléphone. Commence alors une passion qui réunit deux êtres que tout oppose. Entraînés dans le vertige de leur amour irrationnel, les deux amants vont se découvrir peu à peu, avant de se déchirer. Avec ce roman à deux voix, tour à tour émouvant, sensuel, sombre et cruel, Catherine Breillat met en scène une histoire d’amour tragique, une histoire de dévoration mutuelle.”
“Physically, men and women are generally attracted to each other because of their differences. Ask any group of men from any culture to assess the attractiveness of a female, and they will tend to opt for the figure which curves where they are flat, is soft where they are strong and — though this may be a matter for aesthetic as much as scientific debate — swells where they are narrow. The same, in reverse, is true of women, who will tend to express a preference for men with broad shoulders tapering to narrow hips. … Yet in every other respect, we expect the sexes to be attracted to each other because of their similarities. Any computer-dating questionnaire will try to match intellectual like with like. —Brain Sex
“Their joy was thenceforward of a far higher nature, the flame that devoured them was more intense. They underwent transports of utter madness. Their happiness would have seemed great in the eyes of other people. But they never recaptured the delicious serenity, the unclouded happiness, the spontaneous joy of the first days of their love, when Madame de Renal’s one fear was that of not being loved enough by Julien. Their happiness assumed at times the aspect of crime. ” –Chapter 19 in The Red and the Black