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Critical Essay | Excerpt by Camille Paglia

This literature criticism consists of approximately 8 pages of analysis & critique of Excerpt by Camille Paglia.
This section contains 2,375 words
(approx. 8 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Excerpt by Camille Paglia - Excerpt by Camille Paglia

Excerpt by Camille Paglia

SOURCE: "Cults of Sex and Beauty: Gautier, Baudelaire, andHuysmans," in Sexual P ersonae: Art andDecadence from Nef ertiti to Emily Dickinson, Yale University Press, 1990, pp. 408-38.

In the following excerpt, Paglia views Huysmans, Charles Baudelaire, and Théophile Gautier as the three principal French authors whose works defined characteristically Decadent ideals of eroticism and physical beauty.

Joris-Karl Huysmans' novel A Rebours (1884) expands the Decadent innovations of Balzac, Gautier, Poe, and Baudelaire. The title means "against nature" or "against the grain." Des Esseintes, the epicene hero, is product of an incest-degenerated aristocratic line, like Poe's Usher. Romantic solipsism contracts to its ultimate Decadent closure. Renouncing social relationships, Des Esseintes withdraws into the self-embowered world of his ornate mansion. Surrounded by curios and art works, he is like a Pharaoh entombed with his possessions. He...

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This section contains 2,375 words
(approx. 8 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Excerpt by Camille Paglia - Excerpt by Camille Paglia
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