By David Bevan
The 2 critical axes of inquiry are Malraux's ongoing quest for a size of transcendence inside of human lifestyles and, at lest as compelling, his look for the main acceptable and powerful ability during which to precise a altering expertise of simply what that size may be. now not unusually, in an international it appears doomed to languish within the spectral shadow of demise, there are specific constants: a craving for a few fraternity to wrestle man's crucial solitude, a refusal to sink with out attempt into the vortex of the Absurd, a conviciton that lifestyles is to be lived absolutely and very. The human situation is what it truly is. The ways that Malraux's characters, and naturally Malraux himself, deal with this show a transparent evolution, specifically from the 1933 novel los angeles situation humaine onwards. The reader follows Malraux from playful youth throughout the dichotomy of suffering and glorification in his heart years, in the direction of the basically interrogative utterances of the mature guy. the customarily frivolous, occasionally sardonic, humour of sweet sixteen offers manner first to a painful acceptance of the abyss, then to the invention of a truly tentative equilibrium within the philosophy of metamorphosis espoused by way of an older Malraux. Andre Malraux: in the direction of the Expression of Transcendence unearths the primary steps during which Malraux accomplished that equilibrium.
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Extra info for Andre Malraux: Towards the Expression of Transcendence
It is thus that the reader encounters in "Les Herissons apprivoises": Les faits dans cette auberge deviennent sp6cieux ... Pourquoi, pendant la nuit, mon beau plumet rouge a-t-il quitt6 mon casque, et est-il all£ se coucher en rond sur le canape? 7 Nor is it simply in the fabrication of an independent, imaginary world that the early Malraux is marked by his time. It is also possible to underline the presence of most of that range of devices which characterizes the renewal of the comic idiom, manifest in these same years.
Finally, both tragic and comic, devoid of any contagion, are relegated to subordinate roles in a vision preoccupied with the question of the sacred. Malraux, "farfelu numero un" as he referred to himself privately,37 has discovered, like Mery, "a 1'approche de la mort,"38 the real significance man must attach to butterflies, has understood, like the aging Picasso, the true meaning of the mask. The smile of the farfelu now joins the archaic smile of sculpture39 in signifying for Malraux that Man has reached into himself and once more made contact with his soul.
There, in answer to a question from his interviewer concerning the source of the word "farfelu," Malraux responds: "Rabelais. " It is, then, the established climate from which the term "farfelu" emerges, and not merely a deplorable professional need to vivisect, which invites one to approach Malraux's relationship with the comic through two distinct, but connected, channels - the curiously grotesque and the gloriously ephemeral or, in more concrete terms, monsters and butterflies! Malraux's first literary text, "Mobilites," touches on diverse aspects of the elements isolated above: Une bulle aerienne passe, endormie, les pattes repliees, et se creve a 1'une des pointes du croissant.
Andre Malraux: Towards the Expression of Transcendence by David Bevan