May 092013
 

Reading through Andrew Gallix‘s online opus, I found this fascinating bit on René Girard’s Deceit, Desire and the Novel,  book that has endlessly influenced what I write and think. Read Gallix; then read Girard.

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Discovering Deceit, Desire and the Novel is like putting on a pair of glasses and seeing the world come into focus. At its heart is an idea so simple, and yet so fundamental, that it seems incredible that no one had articulated it before. Girard’s premise is the Romantic myth of “divine autonomy”, according to which our desires are freely chosen expressions of our individuality. Don Quixote, for instance, aspires to a chivalric lifestyle. Nothing seems more straightforward but, besides the subject (Don Quixote) and object (chivalry), Girard highlights the vital presence of a model he calls the mediator (Amadis of Gaul in this instance). Don Quixote wants to lead the life of a knight errant because he has read the romances of Amadis of Gaul: far from being spontaneous, his desire stems from, and is mediated through, a third party. Metaphysical desire — as opposed to simple needs or appetites — is triangular, not linear. You can always trust a Frenchman to view the world as a ménage à trois.

via In Theory: Mimetic Desire | ANDREW GALLIX.

  2 Responses to “You can always trust a Frenchman to view the world as a ménage à trois — Andrew Gallix on Deceit, Desire and the Novel”

  1. Great…just what I need…another friggin book to read. 🙂 Just added this to the list.

    • But this one will change your life. 🙂

      NC is like the college education you didn’t get when you were at college.

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