Aux limites de l'extreme: Erotisme, folie, violence. Une lecture Bataillienne de Marguerite Duras et Yves Theriault
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Erotism, madness and violence are three main themes depicted by Georges Bataille, Marguerite Duras and Yves Thériault in a selection of six books: Le Bleu du Ciel, Histoire de l'oeil; Un barrage contre le Pacifique, Moderato Cantabile; Oeuvres de chair, récits érotiques, Amour au goût de mer . This analysis is based on Georges Bataille's theory: the inner experience should be conducted through erotic experiences. The human being is "launched" to the margin of society where Good and Bad live together in a world of extreme passions. Madness and violence exist almost naturally in this world. Bataille, Duras and Thériault give birth to a "new" human being. Male or female, French or Québécois, the three authors go beyond the limits to stage few extreme passions. Couples get together: Bataille and Duras are united in their vision of madness, Thériault and Duras stage a particular form of violence, whereas Bataille and Thériault experience the erotic passions. Nevertheless, the analysis of the texts shows a real movement between the three authors: Thériault, for instance, can be close to Duras in the depiction of eroticism. Comparing three authors of the XXth century highlights more similarities than divergences and establishes at the same time a "bataillienne theory". The extreme does not mean marginal any longer: it is part of society. The human being should confront the extreme in his quest of an inner experience. The marginal reveals some similarities with the animal world. The gender barrier fades away. Male and female characters do not fit in the literary stereotypes anymore; the female writer does not match the feminist theory. An almost feminine writing springs out of Bataille's and Thériault's fictions. Beyond all borders, man steps back into the animal realm and lives erotic experiences with no taboos in a world dominated by madness and violence. These extreme passions are not forbidden incidents anymore but a necessary means to achieve the inner experience.