My Mother, Madame Edwarda, The Dead Man — by Georges Bataille

In these three works of erotic prose Georges Bataille fuses sex and spirituality in a highly personal and philosophical vision of the self. My Mother is a frank and intense depiction of a young man's sexual initiation and corruption by his mother, where the profane becomes sacred, and intense experience is shown as the only way to transcend the boundaries of society and morality. Madame Edwarda is the story of a prostitute who calls herself God, and The Dead Man, published in 1964 after Bataille's death, is a startling short tale of cruelty and desire. This volume also contains Bataille's own introductions to his texts as well as essays by Yukio Mishima and Ken Hollings.

In these three works of erotic prose Georges Bataille fuses sex and spirituality in a highly personal and philosophical vision of the self. My Mother is a frank and intense depiction of a young man’s sexual initiation and corruption by his mother, where the profane becomes sacred, and intense experience is shown as the only way to transcend the boundaries of society and morality. Madame Edwarda is the story of a prostitute who calls herself God, and The Dead Man, published in 1964 after Bataille’s death, is a startling short tale of cruelty and desire. This volume also contains Bataille’s own introductions to his texts as well as essays by Yukio Mishima and Ken Hollings.

Georges Bataille (1897-1962), French essayist and novelist, was born in Billom, France. He converted to Catholicism, then later to Marxism, and was interested in psychoanalysis and mysticism, forming a secret society dedicated to glorifying human sacrifice. Leading a simple life as the curator of a municipal library, Bataille was involved on the fringes of Surrealism, founding the Surrealist magazine Documents in 1929, and editing the literary review Critique from 1946 until his death. Among his other works are the novels Blue of Noon (1957) and My Mother (1966), and the essays Eroticism (1957) and Literature and Evil (1957). According to the New stateman this is his, ‘masterpiece … [a] brilliant, exquisitely fetishistic tale of sexual agitaion’

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