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Love and desire in French moralist discourse
Linköping University, Department of Culture and Communication, Language and Culture. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. (Språk och kultur)
2017 (English)In: Framing Premodern Desires: Sexual Ideas, Attitudes, and Practices in Europe / [ed] Satu Lidman, Tom Linkinen, Marjo Kaartinen, and Meri Heinonen, Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2017, p. 131-150Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The conf iguration of love and desire taking place during the early modern period is distancing itself from the dominance of Christian ideas. New literary constructions of a libertine and far more indulgent view of human life are beginning to refute the hegemonic hostility to the passions and the preoccupation of restraint. The paradigm of man as the image of God gives way to a ‘mixtion humaine’ as Michel de Montaigne called it. This idea of the subject as composed by contradictory forces stands out as a crucial step in the history of subjectivity, and the Renaissance philosopher is in many senses the most important precursor to the French moralists and freethinkers during the seventeenth century in their attempts to come to terms with human passions. Refuting every system, preferring to transgress the disciplines of literature, philosophy, and theology, these writers excelled in minor genres such as sentences, maxims, and correspondences. By means of examples taken from François de La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680), Charles de Saint-Évremond (1610-1703), and Ninon de Lenclos (1620-1705), I want to discuss some aspects of their polyvalent ideas about love and desire. The aim is to demonstrate how they articulated their discursive practice at the intersection of Augustinian, rational, and libertine conf igurations of love and desire, and the implications for the boundaries of gender and sexual identity as well as for the conception of the human subject.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2017. p. 131-150
Keywords [en]
love, desire, moralist, libertinism, power
National Category
Humanities and the Arts
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-137541DOI: 10.5117/9789089649843ISBN: 9789089649843 (print)ISBN: 9789048529001 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-137541DiVA, id: diva2:1096959
Available from: 2017-05-20 Created: 2017-05-20 Last updated: 2018-09-06Bibliographically approved

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Total: 191 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf