The body is sad, alas!

Aside from Marine Breda of course, my musings today accept three other personalities. In fact, nearly three, since the last one, Ion D. Serbo, is, according to fate, “cut”, “half”, “decreased”. We’ll see how. For now, the facts: In the late ’90s, Alexandru George decided to retell “I Love Earthlings.” Specifically, on a precautionary tone: the thought that the next two decades since the first book was published would elicit the same uncomfortable homage does not seem to give peace to the essayist, who alone says his notes have been smoldering for too long. : “Some of my colleagues may remember that at one of the last meetings of the Critics’ Department in the mid-1980s, I stood and said that I was making a statement there, because I was not allowed in the press, that the last novel Teaching is a disgrace to Roman literature. I still retain the notion of the aggravating circumstance that many of those who Their opponents are silenced for the opportunistic reason that it is “not the time” to “attack” our dead, “destroy” our values, and “challenge” the sea. People.

With this essay (repeated in refs, replies, and reviews), the old and somewhat unfair fame of problems (as if the literary field should be a continuous quad, cut only by champagne and gossip and innocent hypocrisy) that the essayist would turn Contributor to a more serious label: a critic. However, the fact is that Alexandru George’s intervention seems plausible, at least in its lines of force, as it is recited today, twenty more years later. What to blame Marine Breda for? In short, insufficient. for each deterioration. First of all, he may be an author: though he seems to take into account bad testimony, the prose writer solves it through all sorts of adventurous tricks, like Petre Bellu. This includes, among other things, real animated scenes associated with violence. For example, a person in whom he throws a competitor from a cable car or a car in which he simply runs around the room during a very primitive feud with his wife. Secondly, Alexandru George sets a temperamental quandary, so to speak: Breda is a common southern citizen (paraphrased, the author of the article says more harshly) and in no way can feel the Transylvanian intellectual atmosphere. Here are quotes from truly unimaginable panic. I think only of the primal way in which Matilda, an architect of a perfect civilization, lives her sexual gratification near Petrini (“Fuck you, my son,/You kiss me with thirst” etc.) or more, Petrine’s own admission, which falls A few degrees away from Gore Pirgu’s expressive temperature: his scream […] But here you failed utterly: he looked at me so amazed (surprised that such a man, who had not said anything to him, had the illusion that he might love her) that I laughed disproportionately at his laughter at him .. lack of apparent motive .. it was A raven, but with a cleavage showing some breasts just under your nose and because of them I came back to attack….”

Do this too. However, beyond the rear split, Alexandru George also discovers some simply realistic excursions into the landscape, especially those that can be overlooked, being simple and few (the most apt example is the architectural anachronisms perpetrated by Eminescu in Poor Dionysus, when he describes Iai in the fifth century ten). That is not the case here, unfortunately. It’s not a problem that Breda never went to college. On the other hand, he is not afraid to put in the mouth of an assistant of philosophy the most amateurish lilies, as if it were difficult to accept. In fact, Petrini seems more interested in the group and gossip writing than on the immediate reservation of the Writers’ Union (with Ion Wittner, Mihai Beniouk, Paul Georgescu, etc.) Too fluid, that is, because the hero professes his conviction that he can sculpt like Brankoy at any time (who will ask, don’t ask…) and can compose a modern symphony from his wrist.

Naturally, by criminalizing such slips, the essayist becomes fragile and his irony is more than once overwhelmed by simple and objective discovery. Sometimes the results are really expressive: “The desire to depict the life of intellectuals leads a novice to make mistakes (for example, when he says about his hero that at one time he became a “music lover” and began to buy Matthäus-Bassion’s Passion, which he listened to several times in Today, several times a day, though this is neither Molino’s tango nor Johann Strauss’ waltz, with recitations lasting a few hours, and by being “bought” in this way, from the store, the truth was not even within the reach of a specialist)”.

two cases

And so I come to a more sensitive question than Alexander George’s essay: the one which states, not even a hint, that Breda was morally unfit to write such a novel. The issue is clearly one of politics. Although we can’t consider it “idiom” (the exact term), the author of The Beloved of the Earth was not, however, a victim of the system. In other words, the aporia case becomes direct, an opportunity for endless and exhausting discussions. In other words, why does Homer have the right to describe the pain of Hector, who was no more than an dirham, and perhaps alien to the arms industry? Let us, then, lower the moral discussion from the very abstract threshold of doctrines, by definition slippery, and let us hold to what reality presents us with. in cases. Two, in particular, are of interest now.

The first, usually better known, is associated with the name Eon D. Serpo, whose biography Breda has attempted to appropriately extract in the file of Victor Petrini. Unlike his “double” from the novel “I Love People on Earth”, Serbo really knew philosophy. He was even a student at Plaga. He even became not only an assistant, but also a lecturer (the youngest in the country at that time). He was even imprisoned by a party whose members were banned and on his behalf was beaten by the legionaries in Sibiu, and then sent, albeit a student, to the front lines. Moreover, he will be abandoned by his first wife, who remarried no more and no less than the prosecutor who convicted him. He did not work against rodents, that’s right: Petrila’s mines were enough for him, since he was sent in a chariot and where, he confessed in notes and in correspondence, he saw many mice close enough. About this tragic journey (something here, also in Old Dilemma #870, December 10-16, 2020), Breda, director of a large publishing house, will be heard saying it in sanitary “laboratory” conditions, after friendly conversations. : Perhaps with Caraion, perhaps with Doinaș … We cannot, of course, blame him for living his life, with its ups and downs, and not with someone else, as if from bruises and blisters. On top of that, Serbo doesn’t blame her either. His reaction contains a display of Stoic wisdom: “To Breda (still alive), wondering what I think of his novel, I love earthlings, I said to him (I’m sorry now, he was dying): ‘A date has been seen between the sad testicles. And I have argued: About my imprisonment and my philosophy, one cannot write from hearsay, as an amateur or as a keyhole viewer.” For convenience, commentators especially cite the last sentence of the passage. As if no one has noticed what scandalous information we hit first Person: I asked Breda Serpo what he thought of the novel…

the irony? For an answer, even if it’s a rough answer, we have to go back twenty years to Earthlings’ most beloved moment and bring to the stage the last character of the three series we initially anticipated: G. Călinescu. As a literary critic, I am not (to the end) a prose writer, but a victim of publicist Marin Breda. Who finds it expedient to simply make a machine gun, poorly packed, poor Ioanides and a black box, with astonishing sufficiency. To make myself clear: Moromeți explains to the author of the history of literature … how it is with Sadoveanu, Rebreanu, Thomas Mann, Stendhal and Balzac. No more, no less. From time to time, phrases like “aesthetic delirium” or “weak instinct”, by the way (the ones that smell of ideological condemnation I didn’t even count: they are everywhere) escape. Despite its title “On Literature with the Aristocrats”, the Breda series (see Viața Românească No. 9, September 1960) finally reaches its territorial waters only when it refers to the rural tricks that natives like Clinescu (or, as the case may be, Ioanides) refer to not He knows them: how to fortify a mud building by cutting bricks, shards of glass, and the like. The tone is more knowledgable than the subject allows: and at any rate, only during a dreadful drought, usually the grass in a peasant’s garden is sufficient to feed a cow.”

Twenty years later, Marin Breda casually described the life of a college student sent to forced labor and summed up the Enescu Chamber symphony as follows: “Ti ti ti ti, fi be be, I didn’t understand anything.”

fair enough!

Cosmin Siutlus Literary critic and lecturer at the Faculty of Arts in Bucharest. Most recently published book: On Mondays. Life and Work, Pandora M, 2021.

Photo: © Archives of the National Museum of Romanian Literature

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