The Anatomy of Love

No. 2 - Year 7 - 06/2017

Editorial

In All About Love: New Visions, bell hooks observes that we are constantly exposed to messages telling us that the workings of love are mysterious and its agency unfathomable; that love is, in other words, only invaluable if it remains unexplained and unknowable. hooks argues that knowledge is a crucial element of love and that understanding its forces does not detract from its importance and value; on the contrary, it enriches the experience of love. More recently, Alain Badiou has in In Praise of Love similarly claimed that love is a ‘truth procedure,’ the kind of experience through which the truth about Two is constructed...

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Featuring

The paper analyses film adaptations of the play Der Besuch der alten Dame written by the Swiss author Friedrich Dürrenmatt with special focus on how they thematise love. Dürrenmatt’s play is in its essence a tragic comedy that deals with the issue of greed and the distortion of basic moral values such as honesty and sincerity that are then also turned into greed, culminating in the justification of violence and murder for profit. The film adaptations that are analysed in the paper are the German version from 1959, the American version from 1964, and the newest German version from 2008. The analysis shows that the American and the newest German version do not adhere to the original pattern in terms of representing the love and relationship between the two main characters, Claire and Alfred. It is important to stress that love is the trigger that directs the plot to its end. The role that love plays in the film adaptations is the key factor that influences whether the end is tragic or not, which depends also on the historic, social, and cultural context in which the adaptations were filmed. Furthermore, the paper includes an analysis of the metamorphosis of a love that cannot die into a love that cannot be sustained: Eros, powered by the libido of the main characters Claire and Alfred in the past, slowly progresses until it turns into the destructive death drive of Thanatos. The analysis simultaneously explores to what extent each film adaptation imitates the original destructive discourse of love present in Dürrenmatt’s play. ...

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Love has traditionally been understood either as an objective, transcendentforce, or a subjective ability. Through a number of steps,the article argues that both these options have lost their credibility due to changes in the media through which love is performed. First, the article demonstrates how the attempts,in the life sciences, to explain love biologically or physically reproduce a traditional romantic ideology. Then, the implications of the inflation of explicit love declarations, and the consequences of internet dating, are discussed. What these examples amount to is the fact that the medium is brought to the fore. A consequence of this is that the romantic ideology is strengthened, while the premises of romantic love – the autonomous subject and the transcendent objectivity – are weakened or even dissolved.Keywords:idealism, materialism, narcissism, subjectivity, reification,internet dating, controlJennifer Lopez, Haddaway, Howard Jones – yes, virtually every singer, author,or philosopher since Sappho and Platohave raised the same question: What is love? This endless recurrence may be taken as a sign both of the aptness and inaptness of the question. The huge amount of answers makes it impossible to say anything that hasn’t already been said. Every love song is a cliché from the outset. On the other hand, the fact that the question keeps coming up over and over again, points to the endurance of the experience of or longing for love, and hence to the inevitability of the issue....

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In Nabokov’s Lolita, Humbert Humbert’s The Enchanted Hunters, as a quest for love, aims to reconstruct a felicitous world or integrate various fragmentary details into an organic unity that revives a lost love, experiencing it on the basis of irony, and revealing a simulation of the desire, violence, and despondency which have been expressed in myths of nymphs and Persephone. The protagonist never reaches this unity, but his narrative of erotic and romantic love reveals him as a pathetic addict engaged in mechanical reproduction related to the phenomena of desire, seduction, violence, and sex. His The Enchanted Hunters does not simulate what he expects of his childhood love with Annabel; rather, it simulates the erotic imagination suggested in Mary D. Sheriff’s term “nymphomania,” in which artists fall degenerately to a model of tragedy. Keywords: simulation, nymph, nymphomania, The Enchanted Hunters The Enchanted Hunters in Nabokov’s Lolita refers to the name of a hotel and the title of a play. This seeming coincidence is actually not coincidental: Nabokov weaves a story concerning a pedophile’s seduction of a prepubescent child into a “story within a story,” in which the girl is imagined as a seducer who bewitches a number of hunters. Just as the girl in the play is a figment of a poet’s imagination, so Lolita in the novel Lolita is an imaginary production of a middle-aged pedophile. Yet Lolita is not so much a novel revealing guilt and mental disorder, but a mélange of art and reality, or more specifically, it is about a coinage in which the author fabricates art and myth in real life. Parallel to the protagonist who simulates what he expects of his childhood love, Annabel, in the form of the nymphet, Lolita, Nabokov replicates the beauty of butterflies in the pursuit of beauty and immortality, and develops the world of art with a pathetic tone whereby we gradually perceive a simulation of the desire, violence, and despondency which have been expressed in the myths of nymphs and Persephone. As Mary D. Sheriff’s term “nymphomania” suggests, Nabokov’s artist falls degenerately to a model of tragedy in the pursuit of butterflies (i.e., love and beauty)....

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[...] opatica je žena, ali žena koju se ne vidi svaki dan. Muškarci je se ne mogu nauživati u svakodnevnom ophođenju, stoga je žele s još većim žarom, skrivena je, zakukuljena, odsječena od svijeta u samostanu, u zatvoru, u beskrajnom zdanju u kojem se iza svakih vrata skrivaju još jedna. Carlos Fuentes, Constancia i druge priče za djeviceBože, oprosti mi. Možeš razumjeti silnu mahnitost u mojim prstima, vulkansku i suspregnutu potrebu mojih usana, vrelinu, i, o moj Bože, miris. Mnoštvo mirisa, otporne dlačice, znoj, znoj, prosta ruka, neobuzdana, poremećena, gruba. Gruba ruka kreće se u rupi, u kaljuži mojega bića. Svjedok – noć: pozornica za nasuprotnosti, noge i raskriljene proscenije, predstava uživo odakle se mrijeste strašne sablasti. Hitnem se s vrhunca svoje vjere, tijelo mi se razvaljuje u prah: prah koji se slobodno kreće, prah koji živi, prah koji je daleko od tebe, Gospodine. Jer griješim s golemim užitkom! I griješim misleći oživjeti. Gospodine, ja umirem od užitka u rukama, jezik traži ono što ne može dodirnuti, slina curi preko otvora; stenjem od trenja grješnih ruku, stenjem, vapim nijemo, ne da bih ti protuslovila, stenjem ne bih li te spoznala; pripojila. Svaka moja pora mjesto je otvorena dijaloga – začepljena znojem i magijom, bludi i slinom. Ruke, nezaustavljive, diraju mi kožu, rupe, mrse dlačice, prodiru divlje kao da nisam ni svoja, ni njihova gospodarica. Ruke puštaju da po njima curi slina s kojom prvo nisam znala što bih, onda sam je prisvojila, pa poslije tražila u iskusnu ritmu. Slina, proziran mulj, nedolično teče iz duše, predaje me na milost noći i mene same, curi, širi se prema netaknutim otvorima, olakšava mi pristup uskim, zabranjenim prolazima, Gospodine. Jer nastojala sam biti, bila sam u zabranjenim i uskim prolazima; zato griješim, Gospodine: s glazbom koja mi klizi niz dušu, s mutnom slinom, obilatom, demonskom, kola mi utrobom, prodire mirisom, miluje usta, zatiljak, pazuha, prepone, noge, oči i dlačice, Gospodine, na rukama uredne, na bedrima neupadljive, na pazusima skrivene, na nogama zanemarene, na ušnim resicama osjetljive, na preponama… na preponama, Gospodine, izazovne dlačice… isprva su štitile, onda bile vlažne, zatim lelujave i sasvim opijene tisućama mirisa, podatne, prostituiraju se meni, mojim rukama, mojim prstima, danju finima, noću faličkima, zorom oštrima. Pola noći. Pola moje sladostrasne propasti, nagovještaja, i na neki način, Gospodine, kunem ti se, spasa. Odjednom, bît ima više smisla u tjelesnosti: tvoja svjetlost čini mi se jednakom, ali jasnijom; tijelo mi se odmara, ali leluja; oblaci su na nebu, ali bliže; vjetar ništa ne govori, ali čujem njegove prijekore. Znoj se suši dok ležim i drhtim od same sebe, putenosti, usana u lavi. Umjesto da se probudim, zaspim: tijelo mi se budi iz transa, tone u san. Prsti se povlače, nastupa mir. Prsti gube na oštrini, varci, brzini, ratnom umijeću. Poprimaju stvarnu dimenziju: samo su prsti. A ti ne govoriš ništa, Gospodine. Ležim naga, prekrivena sumnjama i urednim dlačicama. Ruke su mirne. Poravnam kosu što mi vraća srce na mjesto. Svijet je jedna jedina svijeća koja gori bez straha da će izgorjeti. Ništa ne govoriš. Možda nemaš više što dati mojim pijanim rukama. ...

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