The Marquis de Sade was a French revolutionary politician, writer and philosopher who gifted the world with his libertine novels – Justine, Juliette and Philosophy in the Bedroom. He also produced the 120 Days of Sodom – a masterpiece of transgressive literature – a work that the Marquis spoke of wanting to present to the world – “the most impure tale that has ever been written since the world exists”.
Much speculation has centred on de Sade’s life – that he held orgies in which people were whipped, tortured and depraved. His name gave us the word ‘sadism’ which means cruelty and violence and it is particularly associated with sexual practices that are extreme in nature.
From almost the beginning of cinema, film makers have been applying their Sadean aesthetics onto the silver screen. We can see this in Luis Bunuel’s Un Chien Andalou (1929) with the infamous eye razor sequence – pure de Sade. De »
- Clare Simpson
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