Thanks to Gautier, I Can Enjoy Thriller with a Good Conscience

September 28th, 2004 · No Comments · Artists, Education, Writing

Théophile Gautier, 1811-1872

“It is no less absurd to call a man drunkard because he describes a drunken orgy, or debauched because he describes debauchery, than to claim virtue for a man because he has written a work of morality; our daily experience teaches us the contrary. — It is the character who speaks, not he author; his hero is an atheist, this does not make the author one; his brigands speak and act like brigands, he is not on that account a brigand. At this rate, we should have to guillotine Shakespeare, Corneille and all the tragedians; they have more murders on their consciences than Mandrin and Cartouche; yet we have not, nor do I see the day when we shall, however moral and virtuous the critics wax. To substitute the author for the work and descend to the personalities is the vice of these little narrow-brained scribblers; it gives an air of petty scandal to their pitiful lucubrations, which, as they well know, no one would read if there were no more to them than their own personal opinion.”

Category: Artists · Education · Writing

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