- Paperback: 340 pages
- Publisher: Exact Change; annotated edition edition (February 2, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 187897212X
- ISBN-13: 978-1878972125
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.1 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #433,049 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Maldoror and the Complete Works of the Comte de Lautréamont Paperback – February 2, 2004
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Top Customer Reviews
Maldoror is the narrator, and sometime character when the narrative shifts unexpectedly into third person, and the alter ego of the mysterious young Comte de Lautreamont--which was the pen name of Isidore Ducasse. Dead by 24, he left behind this time-bomb. Maldoror is a sadist, a murderer, a philosopher, an outcast from the normal order of life. He encourages readers to kidnap a child and torture it, to taste its tears and its blood--all within the first 30 pages. Right on! You are not dealing with a rational, predictable mind here.
One of the book's most fascinating aspects is its continuous imagery of animals, both everyday and exotic, majestic and absurd: sharks, turkeys, crabs, eagles, octopi, tigers, wovles, insects, serpents. These creatures are presented with the sharp eye of the biologist. By likening humanity to animals, Lautreamont achieves a double effect: man comes off as debased and at the same time, elevated: to be like an animal man must be rid of all his pretensions and vanities. It is this pretense to culture and civilized behavior that sicken Lautreamont/Maldoror.
Many passsages still shock and disgust--and yes, entertain with their feverish intensity, particularly the one in which Maldoror copulates with a man-eating shark.Read more ›
The descriptions of *Maldoror* in the various Amazon reviews describe the content and style of the work perfectly well, so I shall neither repeat them nor try to outdo them. Instead, I shall offer a slightly less breathlessly adoring view of the work, in general, and of Lykiard's translation of it, in particular.
My view of *Maldoror* is that it is primarily a parody of the extreme tendencies of the "dark side" of Romanticism, in general, and of Byron, in particular. Although Lykiard dismisses Mario Praz's view of Lautreamont and *Maldoror* rather abruptly, Praz's observations seem quite germane, to me:
"[Lautreamont/Ducasse is] a macabre humorist in whom it is impossible to distinguish where sincerity ends and mystification begins".
Those who doubt this observation should have a look at Ducasse's extant letters, many of which bear witness to his desire merely to be a successful writer, and to be judged by the literary critics of the day. In a word, Ducasse/Lautreamont appears to have been precisely the sort of careerist *litterateur* whom the Surrealists excoriated and excommunicated from their ranks with tedious regularity!Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
"The great universal human family is a utopia worthy of the most paltry logic." This haughty, ironic aphorism occurs within Lautreamont's love song to the ocean, one of the most... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Fawn
like new condition, nice book. got this for someone who eventually liked it so all's well that ends well, I guess.Published on December 19, 2013 by catseeds
Im only just getting passed to "Ode to the sea". This is great stuff, with an almost greater story behind the writing of it.Published on December 31, 2012 by DavidK
I came upon this book Via Goodreads and after reading it I LOVED IT
I liked the layers of images and thoughts piled up upon each other
I cannot describe it any other way
I wanted to read this work because of its significance for the Surrealists, such as Andre Breton. It has been called, by Franklin Rosemont (editor of Breton's "What is Surrealism? Read morePublished on June 1, 2011 by Green Stone
When it comes to "Maldoror" you have two choices. Read it; or put out your eyes, cut out your tongue, and chop off your fingers, because you obviously don't deserve words. Read morePublished on October 30, 2009 by maxson
This book is my favorite of all of the 19th century French writers. That century and that country produced some of the most amazingly twisted writers of any era, on par with... Read morePublished on July 1, 2009 by C. Park
It's more fun to realize that it's about writing, illustrations of writing and figures for writing. The reader is represented in the story as the victim of the author, which he... Read morePublished on September 28, 2008 by rhhardin