The Gothic Tales of the Marquis de Sade by Marquis de Sade (Translated by Margaret Crosland) - review by Jeremy Reed

Jeremy Reed

Heroic Marquis

The Gothic Tales of the Marquis de Sade

By

Peter Owen 183pp £12.95 order from our bookshop
 

Maligned, misconstrued and I suspect, little read, the Marquis de Sade remains not only one of the great moralists of the eighteenth century, but also the prototypical exponent of sexual psychology. Outraged by nothing, he continues to shock by virtue of his courage, and his preoccupation with fetish, obsession, the diversity of sexual expression, has in this century found powerful advocates in the likes of Apollinaire, Mario Praz, Man Ray, Georges Bataille and Simone de Beauvoir.

The Gothic Tales are a wonderful introduction to Sade’s diversity, and are among the most accessible of his fiction. If The 120 Days of Sodom grows tedious by way of its pathological cataloguing of bizarre sexual taste, then The Gothic Tales point to Sade’s black humour, irony and his successful

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