Pourquoi être heureux quand on peut être normal ?
Olivier (Editions de l')
- Paru le : 03/05/2012
"La vie est faite de couches, elle est fluide, mouvante, fragmentaire", dit Jeanette Winterson. Pour cette petite fille surdouée issue du prolétariat de Manchester, l'écriture est d'abord ce qui sauve. En racontant son histoire, Jeanette Winterson adresse un signe fraternel à toutes celles - et à tous ceux - pour qui la liberté est à conquérir.
Louise has flowing Pre-Raphaelite hair, and a body besieged by leukaemia, her cells waging war: "here they come, hurtling through the bloodstream trying to pick a fight." But Louise is not dead, merely abandoned by the narrator with the best of intentions. As the lament continues, striking in its beauty and dazzling inventiveness, more of the love story is revealed. The narrator has been a female Lothario, falling in love, and out again, swaggering like Mercutio. But then she meets Louise, married to Elgin--"very eminent, very dull, very rich"--and is hopelessly, helplessly smitten: "I didn't only want Louise's flesh, I wanted her bones, her blood, her tissues, the sinews that bound her together." Elgin persuades her to leave for the good of Louise's health, and all is undone.
Winterson does not shy away from grief, or joy. She has acutely described how love can transform a life, but also destroy it too. But, for Winterson, where there is love there is hope: "I stretch out my hand and reach the corners of the world ... I don't know if this is a happy ending but here we are let loose in open fields." Eithne Farry
This fourth effort from British writer Winterson ( Sexing the Cherry ) is a high-concept erotic novelette, a Vox for the postmarital crowd. The narrator, a lifelong philanderer ("I used to think
marriage was a plate-glass window just begging for a brick"), has fallen in love with Louise, a pre-Raphaelite beauty. Louise is unhappily married to a workaholic cancer researcher, so the
narrator leads her into a sexually combative affair. This scenario seems obvious enough, but Winterson never reveals whether the narrator is male or female. Rather, she teases readers out of
their expectations about women and men and romance: Louise calls the narrator "the most beautiful creature male or female that I have ever seen," and the narrator observes, "I thought difference
was rated to be the largest part of sexual attraction but there are so many things about us that are the same." When the narrator breaks off the affair after learning that Louise has cancer--only
her husband can cure her--the work turns into a eulogy for lost love. Winterson manipulates gender expertly here, but her real achievement is her manipulation of genre : the capacious
first-person narration, now addressed to the reader, now to the lover, enfolds aphorisms, meditations on extracts from an anatomy textbook, and essayistic riffs on science, virtual reality and
the art of fiction ("I don't want to reproduce, I want to create something entirely new"). "It's as if Louise never existed," the narrator observes, "like a character in a book. Did I invent
her?" One wonders, as Winterson intends, and then wonders some more. For Louise--and the narrator's love for her--never seems quite real; in this cold-hearted novel love itself, however
eloquently expressed, is finally nothing more than a product of the imagination.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --Ce texte fait référence à une édition épuisée ou non disponible de ce titre.