Les mots et les choses : the obscenity of Pierre Bayle
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Pierre Bayle's Dictionnaire historique et critique (1696) was notorious not only for its irreligious doctrines, but also for its ‘obscenities’. In the second edition Bayle added an ‘Éclaircissement’, in which he defended himself against accusations of lewdness while providing a historical, philosophical, and literary analysis of what it means to write obscenity. This article discusses Bayle's ‘obscenities’ in the various editions of the Dictionnaire, as well as his self-defence and theory of transgressive speech, and analyses his distinction between words, things, and ideas. It marks the obscenities as a progressive political move in the Republic of Letters of Bayle's day.
van der Lugt , M 2018 , ' Les mots et les choses : the obscenity of Pierre Bayle ' , Modern Language Review , vol. 113 , no. 4 , pp. 714-741 . https://doi.org/10.5699/modelangrevi.113.4.0714
Modern Language Review
© 2018 Modern Humanities Research Association. This work has been made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created accepted version manuscript following peer review and as such may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.5699/modelangrevi.113.4.0714
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