Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Sartre's Genet As Paris

"Even at the present time, now that he is a triumphant hero and is made much of by middle-class society, he hastens to please in order to disarm, and if he suspects that his charm has not worked, if he senses that there is a spot of freedom in the other person's eyes, he gets worried and irritated. He dislikes anyone's criticizing his works, not so much out of pride as out of confusion in the presence of an intelligence which he thought submissive and which suddenly reveals its independence. Whatever mistakes I may make about him, I am sure that I know him better than he knows me, because I have a passion for understanding men and he a passion for not knowing them. Ever since our first meeting, I have no recollection of our having spoken of anything other than him." -- Jean-Paul Sartre, "The Eternal Couple of the Criminal and the Saint…", from Saint Genet: Actor and Martyr. Translated by Bernard Frechtman. New York: Mentor, 1963, P. 214

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