May 17, 2005

Magritte: Philosophy in the Boudoir

I presume that Magritte's painting below is a reference to the Marquis de Sade's Philosophie dans le Boudoir.

de Sade's text is a libertine eros that advocates the following: hedonism with physical pleasure being the goal of life; going back to Nature involves getting in touch with our basic needs and desires; sex education involves stripping away all moral codes and rules; that we should defying all social taboos and codes in order to satisfy our sexual desires and a circulation of bodies for sexual pleasure.If we reject society then we maximize our pleasure through the satisfaction of needs (eating, sleeping, having sex) regardless of whatever prohibitions have been socially imposed on us by Catholicism and religion.

The republican pamphlet in the text proposes to form free citizens while opposing the twin oppressions of royal serfdom and religious superstition. The state should not block the natural desires of man which include incest, rape, whoring, sodomy, pederasty and murder. The last thing the state should do would be to punish such pleasures with the death penalty.

Rene Magritte, Philosophy in the Boudoir,1947

In this image Magritte makes use of the strategies of Freudian dream logic--displacement, condensation, and fetish--to create a disturbing surrealists image of woman. (Female Genitals = Woman) Magritte also substitutes the fetish items of clothing for the actual woman and implies that the fetish is preferable to the real woman.

Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at May 17, 2005 08:40 AM | TrackBack
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