\'\'Ces forces obscures de l\'âme\'\': Women, race and by Christine Margerrison

By Christine Margerrison

This can be the 1st significant research of Camus's prose fiction to discover the constructing presentation of girls, from the author's earliest writings to his final, unfinished novel. averting the conventional relegation of this topic to an emotional or inner most sphere, it strains Camus's highbrow improvement with a purpose to reveal the centrality of this topic to Camus's paintings as an entire. If the Absurd, developed over the physique of the "real" lady, liberates the author to persist with a "true course" of literary construction, the approaching lack of his Algerian place of birth impells a go back to "all that he had no longer been unfastened to choose", the binds of blood. those conflictual and unresolved ties are right here investigated, along side the presentation of legendary lady figures expressing Camus's darkest fears, partially voiced in different writings, relating that "other" Algeria for which he might by no means struggle. Exploring advanced interconnections among sexuality, "race" and colonialism, this quantity is pertinent to all who're attracted to the writings of Camus, really these looking appropriate new methods of coming near near his paintings.

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E, 27) He had never felt so cut off from everything. The world had melted away, taking with it the illusion that life begins again each morning. Nothing was left, neither studies, ambitions, preferences in a restaurant or favourite colours. Nothing but the sickness and death in which he felt himself plunged… And yet, at the very moment when the world was crumbling, he was alive. (SEN, 42) Once more the Self attains unity at the expense of the outside world, except that here the mother is incorporated, no longer a person in her own right but becoming “l’immense pitié de son cœur, répandue autour de lui, devenue corporelle et jouant avec application, sans souci de l’imposture, le rôle d’une vieille femme pauvre à l’émouvante destinée” (E, 27) (“the immense pity of his heart, spread out around him, made flesh, and diligently playing, with neither posture nor pretence, the part of a poor old woman whose fate moves men to tears” (SEN, 42-43) ).

A similar phenomenon has been noted by A. James Arnold in his research on the early versions of Caligula, where he remarks that the subsequently effaced theme of the dead woman, so crucial to the genesis of this play, has been generally overlooked: to a far greater extent than in L’Étranger, the death of a woman sparks off the action of the 1938-41 versions of Caligula (CAC 4, 134). This notion of a woman’s death as leading to some form of awakening for the always male onlooker, and setting in motion a series of other, more significant events, is a feature of Camus’s early writings in particular.

46 Women, Race and Origins in the Writings of Albert Camus The intrusion emanates from a different source but results in what was previously denied to the son; here, aggression leads to a demonstration of her need for him. We are shown a second moment of “arrêt” when the son spends the night on his traumatized mother’s bed, and which, elaborating on the earlier scene, stresses more explicitly the feeling that they are “alone against everyone”. Previously, she had sent him away, but now she is unconscious and dependent; while the “others” sleep, these two breathe in the same fever: Lui ne s’était jamais senti aussi dépaysé.

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