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Marquis de Sade

Fantasy Moon

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I've been indulging in the Marquis' writings over the past couple of months and I must admit that I like the stories. I got an edition through the campus' inter-library loan that included several short stories along with Justine. "The Prude" was rather amusing in that collection of short stories so far.

Has anyone else read his works?
 

aniela

New Member
i read some of the marquis' works some years ago. i admired him a lot for having the courage to demolish every possible taboo concerning human relationships and the views on love, god, religion, normalcy etc. i felt his books like a fist raised against the sky as a symbol of an unfair destiny that society teached us to praise in the hope of a future reward that actually seldom comes. i was impressed by his rage in front of absurd beliefs and by his determination to go beyond any possible imposed limits. the book where i think he lead this to the utmost consequences is les 120 journées de sodome. i did not perceive his work as erotic, but as rebelling.
 

jaybe

Member
Not erotic aniela. Who are you trying to kid?

It's total porn IMHO.

I quite enjoyed it. lol!
 

Stewart

Active Member
I've wanted to read Justine before although I can't remember why now - a scene about hanging, perhaps...

I have seen Pasolini's Salo, which is an interpretation of de Sade's 120 Days of Sodom.
 

ValkyrieRaven88

New Member
I'd been thinking about reading him, but I had been under the impression that his works were about rape and things like that. If it was just B&D I could get through it, but not rape. It bothers me for some reason.
Anyone care to comment?
 

Fantasy Moon

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ValkyrieRaven88, I haven't come across any rape tales yet, but I'm just scratching the surface myself. There's a hardbound copy of Juliette in the living room that has like 1,000 pages... I'm wondering what all manners of vice are in that volume since, unlike her sister Justine, Juliette did not cling to virtue...

Stewart, I heard that Salo was the most disturbing movie ever filmed. Is there any truth to that?
 

LoeMa

Member
I'm not very fond of de Sade, but I've read an excellent essay by Simone de Beauvoir: "Should de Sade be burned?"
There she talks about his intention to provoke and his concentration on the evil side of every human being and other very interesting aspects.

Greetings
 

Fantasy Moon

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LoeMa said:
I'm not very fond of de Sade, but I've read an excellent essay by Simone de Beauvoir: "Should de Sade be burned?"
There she talks about his intention to provoke and his concentration on the evil side of every human being and other very interesting aspects.

Greetings
That sounds like it could be interesting to read. I'll have to look for this essay. Thanks for mentioning it!
 

aniela

New Member
it is true that Sade is hard to digest sometimes. i have felt uneasy many times while reading him, since for me subjects like rape or incest are not very pleasant. but i just appreaciated him for shaking me off my shell and facing ideas towards which i have a very strong aversion. i think sometimes we need to be exposed to things we would avoid talking about. it shakes the taboo charge they are carrying with them, and makes us to take a stand and not just to simply refuse to admit their existence and its implications.
 

ValkyrieRaven88

New Member
aniela said:
it is true that Sade is hard to digest sometimes. i have felt uneasy many times while reading him, since for me subjects like rape or incest are not very pleasant. but i just appreaciated him for shaking me off my shell and facing ideas towards which i have a very strong aversion. i think sometimes we need to be exposed to things we would avoid talking about. it shakes the taboo charge they are carrying with them, and makes us to take a stand and not just to simply refuse to admit their existence and its implications.
I can certainly see how that would be a good thing. It's just some of the things I've heard about him--not just his writing, but his lifestyle--bug me. I'm open to broken taboos, but what I'm worried about is that he is saying it's okay to rape people. I live with a former victim of sexual abuse, and I've seen what it does.
 

aniela

New Member
unfortunately, i think every one of us with a decent age has met people who have been subject to some sort of sexual abuse. and in here, i have noticed that i missed pedophily in my enumeration. maybe freud would have something to say about it. because it is actually the kind of sexual abuse that most shatters me.
and i would dare to advance one hypothesis about that in here. maybe it is because we cast upon this kinds of sexual abuse some sort of interdiction to be talked about, that many of them take place. when i talked to persons who passed through this sort of traumatic event, they were quite puzzled about talking about what happened because no body had ever before talked to them about such things. it is more like an implicit condamnation of it, but rarely an open one (even if this situation seems to change lately). i think that as long as we are served very stereotyped views on sexuality, people will be attraced to what is unsaid. everybody talks about pre-marital sex or things like that. but i did not hear anybody talking about rape along with "common" subject on sexuality. and it remains some sort of forbidden territory that inevitably lures some people. i have not thought about this very thoroughly, but my feeling is that if we talked more about such things before they happen, we would take off a good deal of their attraction. i mean i can very well imagine someone reading sade and then finding what he describes very attractive. since readers have hardly met any alternative view on the subject expressed openly and clearly. i agree that the situation is more complicated than that, and that we could enter into a very long discussion about what influences deviant sexual behaviour, but i still think that talking openly about these matters would deprive them of their potential power. even if Sade's work is a rather complicated form of revolt against sexual taboos, i appreciate him for what he did inhis time.
as about his life, by now i have read many faked biographies. and it is not hard to imagine how people would come up with a story of his life to match his writing since the subjects of his works are very uncomfortable.
 

Ronny

Well-Known Member
After watching Quills, I was a bit curious about de Sade but haven't managed to read anything by or about him yet. The movie was very good but a little disturbing to some, much like I gather his writing was, but if you get a chance and have an interest in him it's definitely worth it. Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet, Joaquin Phoenix and Michael Caine are the main actors and I think Geoffrey is wonderful as the Marquis.
 

Fantasy Moon

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Ronny said:
After watching Quills, I was a bit curious about de Sade but haven't managed to read anything by or about him yet. The movie was very good but a little disturbing to some, much like I gather his writing was, but if you get a chance and have an interest in him it's definitely worth it. Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet, Joaquin Phoenix and Michael Caine are the main actors and I think Geoffrey is wonderful as the Marquis.
I love this movie since I have recently had the chance to see it. I meant to watch it a few years ago, but it was one of those things that was always on the back burner and it got lost amidst so many other movies that I wanted to see.

I finished reading the short stories from The Misfortunes of Virtue and Other Early Tales. Many of the love affairs involved wives who sought to enjoy the same pleasures as their husbands when it came to having extra-marital trysts. However, "The Confidance Men" was a rape story. It told of an innocent country girl who gets duped on her way to Paris to meet relatives by a rake who gets people to pose as her relations. They get her drunk, take her to an appropriate location, and take advantage of her all night. It wasn't written in detail, just that the men had stripped her and taken advantage of her, stealing her wealth and honor.

It seems that nowadays people will expose themselves to such harsh issues by watching Law & Order: Special Victims Unit rather than reading about them, or am I just thinking too much into it?
 

Ronny

Well-Known Member
Fantasy Moon said:
It seems that nowadays people will expose themselves to such harsh issues by watching Law & Order: Special Victims Unit rather than reading about them, or am I just thinking too much into it?

It's a good point, TV and movies are full of violence and sexual abuse but books that contain the same are often frowned on. Of course I think on of the points the movie Quills tried to make was that of if de Sade's writing encouraged or reflected sexual deviance, in society?
 

Fantasy Moon

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I think it reflected society. Many of us have control mechanisms so deeply ingrained into us from birth and the constant nurturing of our upbringing, and it may be those very things that make his writings so shocking even now. Many of the practices he wrote about were already commonplace among the aristocracy if I remember correctly.
 

ValkyrieRaven88

New Member
Fantasy Moon said:
It seems that nowadays people will expose themselves to such harsh issues by watching Law & Order: Special Victims Unit rather than reading about them, or am I just thinking too much into it?
Law and Order: SVU doesn't feature graphic rape in it, and rape isn't portayed as "okay" with rapists constantly getting off scott free. I just read a description of 120 Days of Sodom. It sickened me. I'm all for freedom of expression, but I hate that sort of stuff.
 

Fantasy Moon

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I haven't read 120 Days of Sodom, or the description, so I can't say anything in its defense or persecution. I merely mentioned that show to illustrate how it's no longer quite such a taboo subject. If audiences weren't so engrossed by sexual abuse it would no longer be on the air.
 

ValkyrieRaven88

New Member
I agree to some point, but I think audiences like seeing those who commit sex abuse punished. The Marquis's works don't seem to do that. In 120 Days, these four men locked their daughters, a bunch of little kids and young people in a castle and raped and tortured them for 120 days. At one point they killed their daughters and severely mutilated them. If you want to read the description, do so yourself. It's not something I would be repeating where kids might see it.
 

Fantasy Moon

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That sounds like a similar event from the Marquis' life... oh, yes! I remember reading it from the biography at the Crime Library.

It does sound rather disturbing, but curiosity demands that I read it. I was planning to anyway. Perhaps I'll also give Philosophy in the Boudoir another try since the last time I had a copy, I couldn't finish it due to laughing so much and getting preoccupied with my college studies.
 
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