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Showing posts from November, 2012

Hilda Hilst - If Lispector's psychotic heroines careen towards Mars, Hilst's Madame D, in her flight from the body's 'unparalleled glimmer,' implodes. Her god is too small, too obscene to halt her descent into Hell

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Hilda Hilst, The Obscene Madame D,  Trans. by
Nathanaël and Rachel Gontijo Araujo, Nightboat Books, 2012.hildahilst.org/

The Hilda Hilst Roundtable
THE OBSCENE MADAME D is the first work by acclaimed Brazilian author Hilda Hilst to be published in English. Radically irreverent and formally impious, this novel portrays an unyielding radical intelligence, a sixty-year-old woman who decides to live in the recess under the stairs. In her diminutive space, Madame D—for dereliction—relives the perplexity of her recently deceased lover who cannot comprehend her rejection of common sense, sex, and a simple life, in favor of metaphysical speculations that he supposes to be delusional and vain.

"If Lispector's psychotic heroines careen towards Mars, Hilst's Madame D, in her flight from the body's 'unparalleled glimmer,' implodes. Her god is too small, too obscene to halt her descent into Hell. This brief, lyrical and scalding account of a mind unhinged recalls the passiona…