By David Bevan
The 2 primary axes of inquiry are Malraux's ongoing quest for a size of transcendence inside human existence and, at lest as compelling, his look for the main acceptable and powerful ability during which to specific a altering expertise of simply what that measurement could be. no longer unusually, in an international it seems that doomed to languish within the spectral shadow of loss of life, there are specific constants: a longing for a few fraternity to wrestle man's crucial solitude, a refusal to sink with no attempt into the vortex of the Absurd, a conviciton that existence is to be lived absolutely and very. The human is what it's. The ways that Malraux's characters, and naturally Malraux himself, deal with this display a transparent evolution, in particular from the 1933 novel l. a. situation humaine onwards. The reader follows Malraux from playful early life throughout the dichotomy of soreness and glorification in his center years, in the direction of the essentially interrogative utterances of the mature guy. the customarily frivolous, occasionally sardonic, humour of teen provides approach first to a painful reputation of the abyss, then to the invention of a truly tentative equilibrium within the philosophy of metamorphosis espoused by way of an older Malraux. Andre Malraux: in the direction of the Expression of Transcendence finds the primary steps in which Malraux completed that equilibrium.
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Extra resources for Andre Malraux: Towards the Expression of Transcendence
Fleeting, but so provocative, this curious little scene taken from Malraux's La Condition humaine seems to have gone largely unnoticed by critics and has never elicited to my knowledge an analysis of any depth. At best, readers point cursorily to the passage's prophetically morbid quality, the lack of genuine contact, the very mortal reality that the flesh momentarily couches. And yet it happens to occur at a most meaningful point in the novel immediately prior to the accelerated denouement which commences with Tchen's suicidal attack on Chang-Kai-Chek - and has been carefully prepared by the preceding philosophical discussion between Ferral and Gisors which conceptualizes erotic experience.
The erotic is serious, as suggested during Claude's account of a recent visit to a Somali brothel: "La patronne avait pouss£ vers Perken une fille toute jeune, qui souriait. Non, dit-il; 1'autre la-bas. "6 The erotic is also depersonalized in its nature, self-fulfilling in its intent: "L'essentiel est de ne pas connaitre la partenaire. "8 But these and other fragments, although prophetic, remain subordinate in a novel dominated by the broader theme of Perken's mythomanic desire to realize all the fabrications of his imagination.
It is, however, with Royaume-farfelu, some of which had been prepared as early as 1920, that butterflies and monsters come together for the first time, as the narrator, escaping from the scorpions of Isfahan towards Trebizonde, seeks to buy two sirens for his local prince in order to prove to him their existence: "Son ministre chretien lui dit que les sirenes n'existent pas. II se trompe. "4 The implicit association of an affinity for butterflies with a capacity to perceive beyond the purely logical is one to which we shall return later.
Andre Malraux: Towards the Expression of Transcendence by David Bevan