MJ Nicholls's Reviews > Story of the Eye

Story of the Eye by Georges Bataille
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's review
Jan 30, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: pernod-and-gauloises, novellas, penguin-classics
Recommended to MJ by: Jasmine
Read on January 30, 2012

The last orgy I attended was in Dundee. I turned up two minutes late, improperly dressed (my gimp mask hadn’t been drycleaned in time), and offended the host by complimenting him on his lovely breasts, and even more cracking vagina. I was told to gently lube the testicles of a history teacher for the first romp—clearly the host was furious with me, as the history teacher was my own father—then invited over for a little frottage against the pelvis of a divorced Cher impersonator. She sang ‘Gypsies, Tramps & Thieves’ to the slow rocking of her climax. What an embarrassing night!

This novella is nothing like that embarrassing night, except the sex is almost as degenerate. No physical descriptions of the sexers are included in the text, so the reader is free to imagine two nubile French handsomes instead of acne-ridden shut-ins (a whole new level of perverse) doing their evil deeds. The writer’s postscript explains the use of eggs and eyes in erotic situations, as some psychoneurotic method of dealing with seeing his blind father struggling to wet himself as a child. If I saw that in my youth, no doubt this is exactly the book I would write. This edition contains an extremely boring essay by Susan Sontag (as long as the novella itself) and a typically inscrutable one from Roland Barthes. Skip those and make up your own theories of perversity (with a partner!)
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Reading Progress

03/27 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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Mike Puma Cheeses! The pace at which you read. Somehow I just knew your review wouldn't let me down.

message 2: by MJ (new) - rated it 4 stars

MJ Nicholls I saw it at my local library and couldn't resist. It's only 70 teeny pages of eyeball pluckin' fun!

Jasmine yay!

now read the story of O. but do read the preface on that one.

message 4: by MJ (last edited Jan 30, 2012 03:31PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

MJ Nicholls Susan Sontag sledgehammered Story of O in her postface. But since you commanded nicely I'll read it.

Jasmine why did she sledge hammer it.

she wrote a great intro to one of the cioran books I believe.

message 6: by knig (new)

knig Story of O left me feeling a little off with the female sub's total and I mean total self imposed S&M subjugation to the point of loss of self, whereas atleast in Story of the Eye its more of a physical feast, a free for all with interchangeable tops and bottoms.

message 7: by MJ (new) - rated it 4 stars

MJ Nicholls You mean Bataille isn't a misogynist? Yay!

message 8: by knig (new)

knig Whoa, hold your horses. Of course he's a misogynist! People earn PhD's writing about his misogyny. See all the different permutations here


(Conspiracey theory doesn't apply this time: maybe later).

On a general note, You're partaking of a varied Smutgasboard lately. But if you want to do it properly, you'll just have to join me on this site, :

message 9: by Antonomasia (new) - added it

Antonomasia But your first paragraph sounds so wholesome and jolly compared to Bataille. It's practically an episode of The Darling Buds of May. Albeit a post-watershed one.

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