7 septembre 2011
Inconsistency of the Marquis de Sade ?
Does Sade say something and the contrary ? He is a writer and takes care of the thinking of his different characters. The pamphlet in the Philosophy in the Boudoir, « Frenchmen, Still another effort if you want to be republicans » has been bought at the Equality Palace ( « Palais Egalité », former « Palais Royal », which it is again today in Paris ) by Dolmancé and read by Le Chevalier. In it, it is referred to « the unspeakable criminal Robespierre », the tyrant and the one that reintroduced the Supreme Being ( Robespierre’s « culte de l’Etre Suprême »), therefore religious bigotry. A popular song of the time uses such a designation : « the unspeakable criminal Robespierre, People’s enemy, the dust he has bitten, and his reign is finished » ( in memory of the 9 thermidor [revolutionary calendar ], fall of Robespierre ). Sade still is an aristocrat who puts his pleasures before anything else, but who is able to write fiery republican speeches !
All the characters of Sade do not assert the same thing. For example in Justine ,La Dubois, who lives with lawless robbers, makes the apology of theft because, says her, that restores the natural equality of human beings, as Roland defends the thesis that there is a rightful dominion of the strong or the rich over the weak or the poor.
However, for Sade, what rules all is lust, « jouissance ». I will come back on this point.
Key word : inconsistency, writer, characters, the unspeakable criminal Robespierre, the tyrant, the Supreme Being, religious bigotry, aristocrat, pleasure, thesis, natural equality of human beings, natural inequality inside humanity, rightful dominion of the strong or the rich over the weak or the poor, lust, jouissance.
Key names : Marquis de Sade, Robespierre.
Key works : Philosophy in the Boudoir, Justine.
Key date : 9th thermidor ( revolutionary calendar ).
Key place: Palais Egalité, Palais Royal ( Paris ).
Patrice Tardieu, writer and translator of this text.
Published by Patrice TARDIEU
Marquis de Sade