L’« infidélité onirique » dans L’Emploi du temps ou comment Michel Butor polémique avec les idées de Gaston Bachelard
“ONERIC INFIDELITY” IN L’EMPLOI DU TEMPS OR HOW MICHEL BUTOR DISCUSSES GASTON BACHELARD’S IDEAS
Languages of publication
20th century philosopher Gaston Bachelard considers the combination of two elements of nature as a metaphorical “marriage,” with all its symbolic and religious meaning, including fidelity and prohibition of adultery. Water and fire, united in a moment of alchemical inspiration, form an archetypal couple of great creators, which participate in cosmogonic myths. Bachelard imagines any elemental union in the aquatic categories, which results from his theory where water is the main component of each association due to its properties of universal solvent, and the other three elements — fire, air and earth — represent only secondary components. However, some contemporary writers like Michel Butor offer a completely opposite conception, according to which the elements of nature do not respect the binary rule of the “marriage” and form triple or even quadruple unions. These monstrous mixtures described in his novel L’Emploi du temps give, indeed, a destructive effect and tend to doom the world. What would become of the notion of “oneiric fidelity,” postulated by Bachelard, in the sacrilegious universe of Butor’s novel, filled with accursed amalgamates of multiple elements?
Publication order reference