There is horror in being: this horror is repugnant animality; this does not repel me, on the contrary, I thirst for it; far from escaping, I may resolutely quench my thirst with this horror … for this I have filthy words at my disposal, words that sharpen the feeling I have of touching on the intolerable secret of being … at this moment I no longer doubt that I am embracing the totality without which I was only outside: I reach orgasm.
Georges Bataille, The Accursed Share, translation by Rowan G. Tepper
I don’t want your love unless you know I am repulsive, and love me even as you know it.
In order to reach the limits of ecstasy in which we lose ourselves in bliss we must always set an immediate boundary to it: horror. Not only can pain, my own or that of other people, carry me nearer to the moment when horror will seize hold of me and bring me to a state of bordering on delirium, but there is no kind of repugnance whose affinity with desire I do not discern. Horror is sometimes confused with fascination, but if it cannot suppress and destroy the element of fascination it will reinforce it. Danger has a paralysing effect, but if it is a mild danger it can excite desire. We can only reach a state of ecstasy when we are conscious of death and annihilation, even if remotely.
Pierre Angelique [Georges Bataille], Madame Edwarda, 3rd ed., 1956.
Photoset with 123 notes
Illustrations by Hans Bellmer for Georges Bataille’s Madame Edwarda
Poetry leads to the same place as all forms of eroticism—to the blending and fusion of separate objects. It leads us to eternity, it leads us to death, and through death to continuity. Poetry is eternity; the sun matched with the sea.
The object of sensual desire is by nature another desire. The desire of the senses is the desire, if not to destroy oneself, at least to be consumed and to lose oneself without reservation.
Georges Bataille, The Object of Desire and the Totality of the Real from The Accursed Share
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[L]ove smells like death.
Photoset with 39 notes
Illustration for Georges Bataille’s Histoire de l’oeil (Story of the Eye) by Kuniyoshi Kaneko
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[I]n the extreme of the possible, everything collapses.
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If our desire had not had so much difficulty overcoming our undeniable repugnance we would not have thought it so strong, we would not have seen in its object that which was capable of inciting desire to such a degree.
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