"An amazing sequence of imaginatively bizarre sexual adventures punctuated by philosophical and theological digression. Mlle. De Maupin, Lolita, Candy-all pale beside Juliette."-Library Journal
"Juliette" is a long novel, covering the story and fate of Juliette, the virtuous Justine's libertine sister, and her sexual and criminal adventures out in the real world.
author of "A Young Girl's Crimes"
Various arresting matters are brought on in Juliette, and they all mix erotica with dark messages that somehow sound logical. Marquis de Sade states that doing evil leads to personal fulfillment. He relies upon the success of various political dictators and powerful people with no scruples to illustrate his opinion. Also, he assures the reader that acting upon the most taboo subjects - murder, atheism, incest, rape, hatred - will free you from all inhibitions. In other words, crime, not truth, shall set one free. He illustrates the aforementioned horrid details from a young woman's vantage point. Juliette is quite a character.
Marquis de Sade was one of the best, albeit underrated, literary authors out there. His work is just as, if not more, controversial than Nietzsche, and he possessed the same sort of disarming genius. This novel's content is not to be agreed upon, but for sheer intellectual stimulation it can't be beaten. I look forward to reading more of his work, especially Justine - the counterpoint of Juliette - with utmost anticipation.
How about a dialectical approach?
In his seminal paper "Idiotypic Networks and Other Preconceived Ideas" (Immunological Reviews 1984, 74:5-24) 1985 Nobel Laureate Niels Jerne wrote: I have always believed that a fundamental insight is most likely to emerge if we assume the exact opposite of what seems to be true.
Ever since Plato poured the fundament of Western thinking, we have come to believe that striving for virtue is man's highest mission. The torah expanded this notion with the central dogma "don't do to others what is hateful to yourself". Christianity took this notion a step further with the turn the other cheek philosophy.
Superficial scrutiny seems to justify the assessment that we are living in a society based on Judeo-Christian morals. However, just going beneath the shiny surface of our current society makes you scream and shout at the stupidity/hypocrisy of this notion.
In Juliette, de Sade states the opposite of what seems to be true: do evil without any bounds or scruples and good things will happen to you. On top of that, he goes a few light years beyond the blasphemic to ridicule the notion of a supreme being and the meaning of religion. Furthermore, he dismisses the notion of an afterlife and describes a method to gradually paralyze the last remnants of conscience. Within this theoretical framework, which is reiterated ad nauseum by thieves, prostitutes, French nobility and even the Holy Father himself, the imprisoned author lets all his inhibitions go in one of literature's ultimate sick fantasies. In a clinical fashion every imaginable perversity gets its place in the writer's sun.Read more ›