Freedom, Slavery, and Absolutism: Corneille, Pascal, Racine (Google eBook)

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Bucknell University Press, 2003 - Literary Criticism - 196 pages
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This book explores the concept of freedom by reading the works of Corneille, Pascal, and Racine as political theories in the guise of literature. Within this framework, a certain model quickly becomes apparent, namely that of absolute sovereignty as the guarantor of freedom. The three writers under consideration share the view that freedom is ensured only by absolute authority rather than the absence of such authority. From Corneille, who modulates freedom through an erotic link to the monarch as a means through which the glorious individual is brought into the state's fold, to Pascal, who traces the liberation of the will via absolute submission to God, to Racine, for whom absolute submission to the most Christian king is the only route to political and personal salvation, Elmarsafy studies a politics of taking charge that differs markedly form the contemporary orthodoy that privileges individual freedom.
  

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Contents

Freedom in Chains Corneille and the Erotic Contract
25
Liberti Dei Pascals Fundamentalism and the Politics of Grace
61
Racine and the Dialectics of Slavery
99
Conclusion
151
NOTES
161
BIBLIOGRAPHY
187
INDEX
195
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Page 17 - himself to his Power, (which Intention is to be understood by the End for which he so submitteth;) The Obligation, and Liberty of the Subject. Is to be derived, either from those Words, (or others equivalent;) or else from the end of the Institution of

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About the author (2003)

Ziad Elmarsafy is an Associate Professor of French at New York University.

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