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THEATER, A LIFE DRAMA & A NIGHT-TIME COMIC TRAGEDY

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L’essentiel de ce livre, car c’est un livre quand on atteint plus de deux cent cinquante pages et plus de cent douze mille mots, est en français, bien qu’il y ait des chapitres en anglais.

Le titre en façade n’est qu’un trompe-l’œil, un trompe-leurre qui est là pour vous inciter à ne pas en rester au maquillage de scène et aux apparences costumières. Il y a plus loin, plus profond des réalités alléchantes et inquiétantes, effrayantes et sublimes. L’humanité est une vaste entreprise cosmique phylogénétique qui n’en finit pas de se réinventer, de se remettre en scène, de jouer à l’officiel choqué et au prédateur clandestin.

Il y a en chacun de nous comme une volée de bois blanc qui se perd toujours dans l’ombre de quelque nuit passée à jouer au poker politrique, au bridge communautaire, à la belote tristounette, aux tarots prédicateurs d’une fin programmée qui n’arrive jamais.

C’est la force du théâtre de savoir aux trois coups du départ qu’il yaura une fin avec rideau baissé et applaudissement, même si parfois un peu parsemés. C’est un long périple auquel je vous convie, dans la terre gâte de l’imaginaire..

♯♫♯

The main part of this book, since we do have a book here when we reach more than two hundred and fifty pages and over one hundred and twelve thousand words, is in French, though there are a few chapters in English.

The title on the façade of this dramatic temple is nothing but trompe-l’oeil and baiting-snare intended to incite people not to stop at make-up level and costume illusions. There are farther and deeper realities both appealing and disquieting, both frightening and sublime. Humanity is a vast cosmic phylogenic enterprise that never ends re-inventing itself, resetting its own stage production, playing both shocked official and stowaway predator.

In every and each one of us there is like a good session of ass-caning always lost in the darkness of some night spent playing political poker, community bridge, gloomy black jack, and tarots that predicate and preach some programed ending that never comes ever.

That’s the power of the theater: you know when the curtain rises that three shots will be hit with one wedge and it will come to a falling curtain and a lot of clapping, even if at times the latter is slightly loosely scattered in the house. I invite you to this long journey in the wasteland of imagination.

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THEATER, A LIFE DRAMA & A NIGHT-TIME COMIC TRAGEDY

  1. 1. 1
  2. 2. 2 Dr. Jacques COULARDEAU This is a book and it counts 257 pages on the computer and more than 112,000 words. There are some short reviews, some longer reviews and some quite developed articles. They all have been published in a way or another. They represent a rather small part of all I have written on theater, drama, and non-musical stage productions. They go back some twenty years and the whole period I spent up north in France and the hundreds of reviews of plays and other stage productions up there from 1976 to 1995 have not been collected. That older period is entirely in French. And at the time these reviews were published in the daily paper Liberté in Lille, plus amplified on several radio stations, mainly Radio Quinquin and Canal Sambre. I was going to a show something like five times a week, fifty-two weeks a year, an average count with some heavy periods and festivals. And I should take into account the operas, the ballets, the films and the concerts I also went to. I have not included either all the articles I have published in Théâtres du Monde, though you will find some mention of the most recent ones. These articles are all in French and available from the journal in Avignon. In the following pages you will find some sections in English and some others (the larger part) in French. I apologize for those who do not capture both languages, but do not ask Google or Reverso to translate please. My language does not fit the ready-made one-size-for-all fit-them- all dialect if not patois of Google or Reverso. There is in no way a translating machine that can translate my language properly. So you’d better learn English or French. That would be easier for everyone. And I can provide you with some didactic products I have authored for you to learn some English, though that authorship is not without a price, and yet then you would be my guinea pigs since I would check the value of these didactic products by looking at your own productions, mistakes and gems alike. But this is another story. So enjoy these notes, pages and I would advise you to download the whole thing and to enjoy it ten pages at a time. Dr. Jacques COULARDEAU
  3. 3. 3 TABLE OF CONTENTS ut Of The Fringe, Contemporary Latina/Latino, Theatre And Performance, Cala Svich & Maria Teresa Marrero, Editors, New York, NY, 2000 Luis Alfaro – Straight As A Line – 2000 Migdalia Cruz – Fur, A Play In Nineteen Scenes – 1995 Coco Fusco & Nao Bustamante – Stuff – 1996 Migdalia Cruz – Fur, A Play In Nineteen Scenes – 1995 Nilo Cruz – Night Train To Bolina – 1994 Naomi Iizuka – Skin, An Adaptation Of Büchner’s Woyzeck – 1995 Oliver Mayer – Ragged Time – 1994 Pedro R. Monge-Rafuls – Trash, A Monologue – 1995 Cherrie Moraga – The Hungry Woman, A Mexican Medea – 1995 Monica Palacios – Greetings From A Queer Senorita – 1995 Caridad Svich – Alchemy Of Desire:Dead-Man4s Blues, A Play With Songs – 1994 héâtre Et Téléologie Cathartique Ou Let’s Cut Off Our Noses To Spite God’s Face (Part One) I./ Les Bases De Notre Civilisation Judéo-Chrétienne : La Construction De La Teleologie Judeo-Chretienne. a. La Genèse b- Caïn et Abel c- Abraham et Isaac d- David et Goliath e- Daniel f- Les quatre évangiles g- L’Apocalypse II./ Les Temps Anciens : Le Triomphe De La Teleologie Catholique 1. Ludus Danielis 2. Autres œuvres du Moyen Âge III./ Les Temps Baroques : Époque De La Contradiction Christique Et Du Doute 1. Alessandro Scarlatti : Il martirio di Santa Cecilia, la lettre de la téléologie du martyre. 2. Johann Sebastian Bach, Les quatre Passions, ou la lettre embellie 3. Georg Friedrich Haendel, entre biblicité et nature, l’Aufklärung en marche héâtre Et Téléologie Cathartique Ou Let’s Cut Off Our Noses To Spite God’s Face (Part Two) IV./ La Révélation De Faust : Dieu En Train De Mourir V./ La Mort De Dieu : Gustav Mahler Et Igor Stravinsky (Avec Jean Cocteau En Complice) VI./ Dieu Est Mort, Le Monde Aussi : Vers Une Téléologie Virtuelle 1- The Time Machine 2- Back To the Future I – II – III 3- Terminator I – II – III 4- Good Bye Lenin 5- La Passion du Christ, retour des religions ? Conclusion anay Geiogamah Et La Renaissance Indienne Dans Le Théâtre Et Pour Toujours, Du Temps Historique Au Temps Spirituel O T T H
  4. 4. 4 I./ « Body Indian » (1972) II./ Foghorn (1973) III./ 49 (1975) Conclusion Addendum 1 - Hanay Geiogamah – New Native American Drama –Three plays – Body Indian (1972) – Foghorn (1973) – 49 (1975) Addendum 2 - Walt Disney – Johnny Depp – The Lone Ranger – 2013 Addendum 3 - Coming Up Productions - Theater 130 - 49 by Hanay Geiogamah – Trailer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ywhLtmOG5E Foghorn Trailer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URxpEW-AsKs Théâtre De Ma Vie opat – Les Grandes Signatures Du Théâtre Volume 2 – 2011 Roland Topor 1 Jean-Michel Ribes – Batailles – 2008 Françoise Sagan – Château En Suède – Annick Blancheteau – 2009 (1960) Marivaux – La Seconde Surprise De L’amour – Luc Bondy – 2008 Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt – Le Lilbertin – Bernard Murat - 2007 Roland Dubillard (1923-2011)– Les Diablogues – Anne Bourgeois – 2009 opat – Les Grandes Signatures Du Théâtre – 2010 Georges Feydeau – La Puce À L’oreille – Bernard Murat – 2006 Henrik Ibsen – Hedda Gabler – Roman Polanski – 2004 Fedor Dostoievski – Crime Et Chätiment – Robert Hossein - 2001 Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt – L’évangile Selon Pilate – Christophe Lidon - 2006 ean-Marie Besset, Plus Sexuel Que Moi Tu Meurs Brûlé En Place De Grève, Bouffé Par Le Sida, Castré Pour La Bonne Cause Austin Pendleton – Jean-Marie Besset – Oncle Paul – Théâtre Du Rond Point – 2005 Jean-Marie Besset – Rue De Babylone – Théâtre Du Petit Montparnasse – 2006 Jean-Marie Besset – Les Grecs – Théâtre Du Petit Montparnasse – 2006 Jean-Marie Besset – Ce Qui Arrive Et Ce Qu’on Attend – Petit Montparnasse – 2010 Jean-Marie Besset – Le Banquet D’auteuil – Vingtième Théâtre – 2015 Jean-Marie Besset assigne Aurélie Filippetti devant le Conseil d'Etat acques Coulardeau at Théâtres du Monde 2016 (56), , Théâtres du Monde 2016 – Voltaire https://www.academia.edu/24441489/Th%C3%A9%C3%A2tres_du_Monde_2016_- _Voltaire a Comédie Française Est Un Mythe, Mais Hélas ! J’ai Ici Un Choix Inégal ! Comédie Française – Corneille – Horace – 1973-2009 Alfred De/Musset – Lorenzaccio – Comédie Française – 1977-2010 Henri De Montherland – Le Cardinal D’espagne – Comédie Française – Ina – 1964- 2010 Crébillon Fils – La Nuit Et Le Moment – Comédie Française – 1979-2010 Jean-François Regnard – Le Légataire Universel – Comédie Française – 1975- 2009 Édouard Bourdet – Les Temps Difficiles – Comédie Française – 1966-2008 C C J J L
  5. 5. 5 acques Coulardeau &VoltaireAtAcademia.Edu(44)Le Comique De Voltaire EstSouvent Mélodramatique Et Larmoyant https://www.academia.edu/19832298/Comique_de_Voltaire_m%C3%A9lodramatique_et_l armoyant Théâtre Complet De M. De Voltaire, Conforme À La Dernière Édition, Rome Septième – Facsimilé Par Ulan Press, https://www.academia.edu/s/e1791e691e Voltaire – L’indiscret – 1725 […] Voltaire – L’enfant Prodigue – 1736 […] Voltaire – La Prude - 1747 […] Voltaire – La Femme Qui A Raison – 1949 […] Voltaire – Nanine – 1749 […] Isaac Newton And Judaism […] acques Coulardeau at theatresdumonde.com (32) Théâtres du Monde N°25 – 2015 http://www.theatresdumonde.com De L’amour Au Théâtre Strutting On The Stage Of Art And Life https://www.academia.edu/22857824/STRUTTING_ON_THE_STAGE_OF_ART_AND_LIF E Jacques COULARDEAU - Le Défi De La Christianisation D'un Mythe Oral Celte: Tristan Et Yseult P 33 NOTES DE LECTURE Jacques COULARDEAU - James V. Hatch & Ted Shine, Eds. Black Theater USA. Plays By African Americans. The Recent Period 1935-Today P. 357 édée Rencontre Jacques Coulardeau @Academia.Edu (24) From True Lover’s Knot To Hangman’s Knot, Medea Battling With History Ou Des Lacs D’amour Aux Nœuds Coulants, Médée Aux Prises Avec L’histoire https://www.academia.edu/1404412/FROM_TRUE_LOVER_S_KNOT_TO_HANGM AN_S_KNOT_MEDEA_BATTLING_WITH_HISTORY_ou_DES_LACS_D_AMOUR_ AUX_N%C5%92UDS_COULANTS_M%C3%89D%C3%89E_AUX_PRISES_AVEC _L_HISTOIRE édée – Medea – All Reviews https://www.academia.edu/1404411/MEDEE-Notes_de_lecture_visionnement_etc ingt-Huit/Twenty-Eight Reviews 1- Seneque – Medee 2- Pasolini – Medee Page 3 3- Pier Paolo Pasolini – Medee – Texte 4- Euripide – Médée – Isabelle Huppert – Jacques Lassalle 5- Christa Wolf – Medea – English Translation 6- Christa Wolf – Medee 7- Jean Anouilh –Medee 8- Corneille – Medee 9- Max Rouquette – Medee 10- Euripides – Medea 11- Liz Lochhead – Medea – After Euripides 12- Seneca – Medea Page 18 13- Isabelle Stengers – Souviens Toi Que Je Suis Medee 14- Laurent Gaudé – Médée Kali 15- Ludmila Ulitskaya – Medea And Her Children J J M M V
  6. 6. 6 16- Steven Weisenburger – Modern Medea, A Family Story Of Slavery And Child- Murder Fromthe Old South 17- Pascal Dusapin – Heiner Müller – Philippe Herreweghe – Medeamaterial – 1990-1991/1992/1993 18- Marc-Antoine Charpentier – Medee – Thomas Corneille – 1693 19- Luigi Cherubini – Maria Callas – Medea – 1953 20- Cherubini – Medea – Teatro Regio Torino – 2008 21- Franz Grillparzer – Medea 1822 22- Aribert Reimann – Medea – After Franz Grillparzer 23- Aribert Reimann – Medea – After Franz Grillparzer – Dvd – Wiener Staatsoper 24 – Giovanni Simone Mayr – Medea In Corinto 1813 – Cds – Saint Gallen – David Stern 25- Giovanni Simone Mayr – Medea In Corinto 1813 – Dvd – Bayerische Staatsoper – Ivor Bolton 26- Angelin Preljocaj – Le Songe De Medee 27- J.S. Morgane – Interpreting Medea 28- Revaz Gabichvadze – Georgiy Aleksidze – Tbilissi National Theater – Medea e Théâtre Est Le Miroir De Nos Angoisses - Jacques Coulardeau At Academia.Edu (15) Théâtre Et Téléologie Cathartique, Let’s Cut Off Our Noses To Spite God’s Face (Part One), Dr Jacques Coulardeau https://www.academia.edu/1486212/TH%C3%89%C3%82TRE_ET_T%C3%89L%C 3%89OLOGIE_CATHARTIQUE_ou_LET_S_CUT_OFF_OUR_NOSES_TO_SPITE _GOD_S_FACE_PART_ONE_ Théâtre Et Téléologie Cathartique, Let’s Cut Off Our Noses To Spite God’s Face (Part Two) Dr Jacques Coulardeau https://www.academia.edu/1486225/TH%C3%89%C3%82TRE_ET_T%C3%89L%C 3%89OLOGIE_CATHARTIQUE_ou_LET_S_CUT_OFF_OUR_NOSES_TO_SPITE _GOD_S_FACE_PART_TWO_ acques Coulardeau At Academia.Edu (27) Out Of The Fringe, Contemporary Latina/Latino, Theatre And Performance, Carida Svich & Maria Teresa Marrero, Editors, New York, Ny, 2000 https://www.academia.edu/11582951/Chicano_a_drama_can_we_end_the_Post_C olonial_Traumatic_Stress_Syndrome eading Notes And Reviews 1- LUIS ALFARO – STRAIGHT AS A LINE - 2000 2- COCO FUSCO & NAO BUSTAMANTE – STUFF – 1996 3- MIGDALIA CRUZ – FUR, A PLAY IN NINETEEN SCENES – 1995 4- NILO CRUZ – NIGHT TRAIN TO BOLINA – 1994 5- NAOMI IIZUKA – SKIN, AN ADAPTATION OF BÜCHNER’S WOYZECK – 1995 6- OLIVER MAYER – RAGGED TIME – 1994 7- PEDRO R. MONGE-RAFULS – TRASH, A MONOLOGUE – 1995 8- CHERRIE MORAGA – THE HUNGRY WOMAN, A MEXICAN MEDEA – 1995 9- MONICA PALACIOS – GREETINGS FROM A QUEER SENORITA – 1995 10- CARIDAD SVICH – ALCHEMY OF DESIRE:DEAD-MAN4S BLUES, A PLAY WITH SONGS – 1994 L J R
  7. 7. 7 osé Valverde at Amazon (23) What’ve You Done, Harry? Qu’as-Tu Fait, Harry ? A Bilingual Edition In Our Founding Past José VALVERDE, translation Jacques COULARDEAU Acteur en pleine performance J
  8. 8. 8 OUT OF THE FRINGE CONTEMPORARY LATINA/LATINO THEATRE AND PERFORMANCE Cala SVICH & Maria Teresa MARRERO, Editors NEW YORK, NY, 2000 READING NOTES AND REVIEWS Dr Jacques COULARDEAU This collection of ten plays is one of the strangest collections I know. Most authors are women. The theme of Chicana women is central and lesbianism is shown as some kind of escape from the Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Syndrome of Chicano men and Chicana women. Among these plays there is a rewriting of Medea’s myth from this lesbian point of view that is phenomenal in many ways and particularly in the fact that Medea is making herself a lesbian to protect and save her motherhood that leads her to killing her own son not to lose him to his father and hence lose her motherhood, not seeing that she kills her motherhood at the same time, which becomes final in the end when the dead son brings poison to his own institutionalized mother and thus terminates her like some kind of vermin. Out of love . . . for sure! At the same time the consciousness of that Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Syndrome is not clearly captured which leads to mourning the dead Chicano soldiers in the American imperialistic wars without denouncing these wars per se. I just wonder if these authors have not integrated themselves too much into American society and particularly American universities that are dealing with Indian or Chicano or Lesbian studies as some kind of attractive gimmicks to have more students. Note the gay theme is nearly totally absent from this collection and yet when mentioned like in the first play of the collection it does not concern Chicanos per se, even if the main part of this first play happens in Las Vegas which is not exactly Chicano or Indian. Enjoy the reading of the reviews as some kind of introduction to that Chicano and Chicana drama which is anyway essential in American culture today, and not only, far from it, the United States. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU Olliergues, France, March 22, 2015
  9. 9. 9 OUT OF THE FRINGE CONTEMPORARY LATINA/LATINO THEATRE AND PERFORMANCE Carida SVICH & Maria Teresa MARRERO, Editors NEW YORK, NY, 2000 LUIS ALFARO – STRAIGHT AS A LINE - 2000 The play is about the death of an AIDS patient. Paulie is alone facing his mother that has no name. But does she need one? She is the generic prostitute got pregnant on a fifteen minute trick with nothing but a customer that will never be identified in spite of what the mother may say. The son has grown homosexual vastly encouraged to do so by his mother who seems to like the idea of him being a drag queen. She, a prostitute, could not imagine her son to be a customer of hers, hence a heterosexual man. As a homosexual he is no longer a man for her in her own mind. He got promiscuous and of course got AIDS. He is growing morbid as the disease advances and he is trying various methods to commit suicide, supported by his mother to do so. It starts with his intention to jump in front of a through train in the New York Subway while being connected to his mother on the telephone, sharing the experience. But he fails. Then he gets locked up in his mother’s Las Vegas circle and circus. There his suicide becomes a lifelong enterprise, as long as his life will last. The only link he has with the outside world is a gay telephone chat. The mother is purely invasive and controlling. The telephone is virtual communication hence a virtual relation with someone who remains virtual, with a world that is phantasmagoric, fantasized, hence fully unreal. Paulie stops taking his drugs in order to die. It is then when death is near that the mother discovers motherhood in the promised and unannounced solitude this death will bring her. The mother’s love is coming too late. Is it for a man or is it for a pet that she is going to lose? Her knowing that love comes too late too. Her knowing that love came too late is too late too in its own way. This mother’s love is a typical black humor trick played by fate on the mother. Paulie bites the mother to force her to tell the truth. So she tells him about the father who remains anonymous and only identified as a customer. Paulie brings up then the concept of destiny. His fate was written on the wall in a way. Was it a curse? What is from God? He tells about his own profession: a nude male burlesque in a go go house. Now he is reduced to an intravenous catheter to survive he feels castrated, raped by this penetrating dripping lifeline. Life has played this second black humor trick, but this time on him.
  10. 10. 10 The mother wants to get him into some kind of fencing game to force him to fight the disease. She is pathetic. She is kicking him. She is symbolically raping him, which will only be at least the second time. And he submits to this symbolical rape from his own mother. Black humor again for a third time on both of them. When the mother finally wants to love Paulie, she can only rape him, which is utterly castrating. His final death dementia is a vision of himself at Victoria Station, London, buying a ticket for two. That’s no longer black humor but some deep morbid humor. The second seat is for his mother who he would like to take along in his final trip. He dies of course. His mother thanks him – though a little bit late – for her motherhood. She goes back to Las Vegas, the oasis in the desert, the totally artificial world in which she can survive. A dead end in a way. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU COCO FUSCO & NAO BUSTAMANTE – STUFF – 1996 This play is introduced by an essay that presents cannibalism as the central metaphor of colonialism and later of the final revenge of the decolonized, if they are really decolonized since they reproduce in their minds and life the very world of colonization. They really look more like Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Syndrome victims. In the authors’ own words: “Latin American literature is full of references to cannibalism – as the European colonial’s fear of the indigenous “other” as a cannibal, as a trope for Europe and America’s ravaging of Latin America’s resources and, finally, as a symbolic revenge of the colonized who feed off the colonial. If food here serves as a metaphor for sex, then eating represents consumption in its crudest form.” (45) This play is an extremely complicated play and yet so simple. Southern women, food, sex plus Spanish and we have the main avenging characters. There is nevertheless a lot more heritage in that extravaganza. 1- The Goddess and her three lovers, the Wind, Water and Fire, is a rewriting of the triple goddess in her triple enslavement to her three promiscuous lovers. The Goddess is a whore in a way, but a triple whore. 2- The Goddess wants a human lover and she makes it out of food. We can understand that human lover might be white due to his fate. Anyway that lover is nothing but food for the body
  11. 11. 11 if not for the mind. In a way he is food for the mind but he reduces the mind to a cannibal digestive system from mouth to anus and transit in-between the two. 3- Then the priestess destroys the lover in an orgy of destruction and cannibalism as if this ritualistic creation of a human lover could only lead to frenzy and annihilation. It reveals a totally unethical heritage here. This heritage is perverted by the desire to get even with what was lost, what was imposed, what was rejected, what was derisively recreated. 4- The acme of this fake and totally traumatic liberation from colonialism and the colonial mind is in the quick lesson of Spanish. It goes as follows in its translation (mostly personal): “Do you want to dance? “Yes, you’re really great! “Do you want to go to my place? “We must know each other better. “What’s your name? “I’m called Lola. Where are you from? “I’m Nigel from England. “It is getting late. I must go home. “Can I take you there? “Yes, OK! “Now, get on the bed! “OK! “Get on your knees! “Well, you see, you are slightly big. “Let’s try another way. “I like that. You’re driving me wild. “Get some rope. “Don’t tie me up, please. “You are going to be punished. “You are an animal. “Cool it down. “I am very angry. “I lost control and I am sorry. “You’re using me. “It’s not true, I am looking for love. “I am looking for financial support. “We could live together in my country. “I want to know you a little bit better.” That’s a very clearly oriented conversation towards nothing but taking the woman, at least for the man or the tourist, sole satisfaction of this male character in his touristic perambulation. The Spanish lesson is supposed to make it easier.
  12. 12. 12 Women are nothing but there to satisfy the desires, and impulses of male tourists. Women at best pervert their alienation into a subjugating weapon. We must also note the heritage is vaguely Indian but it has been transformed into some entertainment, some purely lascivious attraction, a fun-fair ride in a way. The Indian heritage has been totally distorted into what may attract the libidinous impulses of American men. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU MIGDALIA CRUZ – FUR, A PLAY IN NINETEEN SCENES – 1995 The duplication of Michael and Nena, the main characters, into Dream Michael and Dream Nena enables the author to reveal their hatred and to make Dream Michael kill Dream Nena, which Michael does not do with the real Nena who dies but in a different way: “(Dream Michael, isolated in a pool of light, speaks to Citrona. He stands over a smoldering pile of pink rags that was once Dream Nena.) DREAM MICHAEL [in Spanish translated as follows] (I killed her. Now we can be together forever. She didn’t deserve you. I know you wanted me. It was in your eyes . . . you didn’t have to say a word . . .)” The story itself is not that meaningful. Michael has two females under his control. Citrona, a wild animal he wants to turn into his spouse, and Nena who is the trapper he needs to take care of Citrona who is a wild animal after all, and all that it means. Michael is in love with Citrona, the very hairy animal she is, Nena is in love with Michael and Citrona is in love with Nena. Citrona finally gets permission from Michael to court Nina and Nina accepts to play the game if Michael accepts to marry her. But it all goes wrong. Citrona kills and eats Nena. So Michael is going to be able to get Citrona. But the end of the play is Michael’s scream from off stage where he had followed Citrona. We can imagine the cannibalistic ending and since Citrona represents the wild women of the colonized Indian nations, she is depicted as hairy and cannibalistic. That sounds simple-minded, primitive. A cannibalistic “ménage à trois.” But the play is a metaphor. There are two types of women. 1. Hairless and servile women who love men; 2. Hirsute and beastlike cannibal women that eat all they love and what’s more prefer women for love. Men are only perishable libidinous objects that do not really deserve love. We mean of course the colonizers, the hairless civilized white men
  13. 13. 13 Michael uses both types and in spite of Nena who loves him, he loves the animal, the beast. The animal female was made such by her own mother, and her own mother sold her to Michael. The mother is thus seen as the real monster that procreates a monster she sells as soon as she can for a profit. We have to understand the text may speak of Citrona’s mother generically, meaning all mothers. This discourse against mothers seems to be present in many Chicano/a plays. Women are just objects, instruments, desirable objects or useful slaves. It is transmitted from mother to daughter and it becomes a curse. There is no hope with men because they are just dirty pigs who only want a wild encounter with the wild animals they keep in cages. Men like boys will be men just like boys. But the wild animal woman has the last word, or the last tooth bite. She kills Nina with a letter opener from her very own mother given to her by Michael (premeditating the end). And then she kills Michael and she eats him after having eaten Nina. There is no hope for humanity, but unluckily quite a future even though hopeless, since the women men want end up eating them up, hence getting rid of them. Is this a metaphor of a future without men? Maybe though it sounds then all the more hopeless and vain since soon there will be no men to help make more men who are the delicatessen luxury of these women. This cannibalistic theme is remarkable in many of these plays, associated to women and even mothers. The point is to know whether it is a parable of the desired liberation of women, or if it is a parable of the longed for liberation of the colonized from the colonizers and colonization. As such then women would be the agent of that liberation and their cannibalism would be the very realization, materialization of the Post Colonial Trauma Stress Syndrome all the colonized are the victims of. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU NILO CRUZ – NIGHT TRAIN TO BOLINA – 1994 The train is only in the background. The main characters are two kids, Mateo and Clara who are living in a region where a drought is so severe that everyone is supposed to give something to feed the pig, their last chance not to starve, and even so. Foolishly Mateo has suggested he could feed his own penis to the pig. He has to go because a promise has to be held pr escaped. The two kids finally jump on a freight train that takes them to a city where they can try to survive on the steps of a church. Escape thanks to a mechanical bridge. But the real question is why, since there is a train, the outside “world” does not help this particular region or country. The drought victims are abandoned to die. The children’s escape becomes picaresque then. From the church steps they are retrieved by some priest and taken to a nearby monastery or hospice. There the boy has his hand taken care of that had been bitten by the pig (a symbolical fulfillment of the promise to give his penis to the pig), and the girl can integrate the team of the hospice, washing and eventually cooking. But we discover the reason why everyone has to do something. Most religious personnel has disappeared because of the guerilla warfare going on around this hospice and that guerilla warfare is the result of the drought, of the abandonment of the famine-stricken people, though the guerilla warfare might just as well be the cause of the abandonment.
  14. 14. 14 We can then wonder what is better, the drought or the guerilla warfare. But that’s when the story takes a bad turn. A nun, Sister Nora, is investigating the children to know if they are pure. Sister Nora has a vindictive desire to kill soldiers or guerillas. But she more or less imagines things from the drawings the two kids have produced. “Look at the shape of the tongues. The sexual form of the hearts. You know these hearts lead me to believe that this child was sexually active with her friend. We have to be careful with them. We should keep them apart.” For some moralistic totally speculative consideration the nun comes to an even worse evil than what her perverted heart and mind sees in simple drawings: to keep two ten-eleven year old kids apart because they might eventually maybe have had some sexual contact that cannot be much due to the age of the two children concerned. That world is sick in their mind in two ways: to ban anything sexual because sex is evil, dirty, gross, disgusting or whatever (at least to nuns who supposedly have never had any dirty thought about it, let alone practice); to imagine anything looking like has to do with the real thing it looks like as if a resemblance was proof, evidence. Both are the results of traumas. The first trauma is definitely sexual. The second is a logical trauma very common in many educated people because it is easy to say blue is blue and what looks like blue must be blue. It might be close to acceptability when dealing with a color, though there might be a lot of dissension and disagreement on same shades of blue, but it is absurd when dealing with things slightly more complex like “boys will be boys,” “girls will be girls” and “all that flies is butterflies.” The play ends with two dreams, two myths. Another young girl, Talita, living in the hospice is going to be saved because an American mother is going to come and get her away from here. It’s a myth, an escape, no solution, just survival. Mateo and Clara, though kept apart, manage to come together with a game. They play dead and as such get in touch with some dead people and by doing it simultaneously they can meet in that dead no man’s land. It shows how cruel the world is but also how imagination can repair that cruelty, even if it is not a real solution but only an illusion, a mirage. Survival is often fed by and with illusions. Survival in a morbid world torn apart by warfare, abductions, torture, executions, rape and many other evils is like a daily miracle, our daily mental bread, in other words an impossible event if we count on it to come all by itself, on the wings of the night. Real escape then is in invisibility but it is nothing but an illusion, a mental illusion. Yet the play brings up another questioning. It is written by a Chicano. A Chicano is torn between the recollection of an evil warped distorted hellish past left the Chicano behind and the dream that was his over there, and has never been fulfilled, of being able to reach happiness in the USA. There is no American mother to claim you to some paradise,
  15. 15. 15 be it only because you will forever be torn between that recollection and the dream you had then, two evil hellish elements that drown you in some Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Syndrome. To be decolonized, or in fact “decolonialized” in your mind, you have to get over this PCTSS and that cannot be achieved by escaping it geographically because there is no escape from it which is in your mind. You have to learn to deal with it and to domesticate it into an asset. Sister Nora is certainly not the solution who is haunted by the violence around her and the perverted ideas she projects onto any child appearing in her vicinity. Good morning “Deo gracias in excelsis!” Dr Jacques COULARDEAU NAOMI IIZUKA – SKIN, AN ADAPTATION OF BÜCHNER’S WOYZECK – 1995 We have here an absolutely disorganized world and yet that disorganization seems to be structured. Jones, the main character, seems to be confronted to a hectic messy world. He wants to love but he is haunted by a past of humiliation and a present of alienation. The two police scenes are typical of both provocation and humiliation from the police side when Jones is just not able to react and is doing nothing, wrong or right, anyway. His girl friend Mary, the well named though cursed, is totally cut off from any attachment. “I am dreaming of men. They fall out of the sky. They fall and they crash into buildings and some of them get caught in the trees. Some of them hit the ground and break into a lot of little pieces and I pick up all the pieces I see and I take them home with me and I sew the pieces all together anyway into this thing.” And she reconstructs these men but she cannot satisfy her desire. Her friend Lisa is not better even if maybe less destructured but yet she is only confronted to direct sexual solicitation: “He says he’ll give me ten bucks if he can put his hand on my thigh. . . MAN: I want to put my hand on your thigh. I’ll give you five bucks. . . I would like to put my hand on your thigh. I’ll give you ten bucks.” At least she does not have any contact even if it were only monetary because anyway it does not work, among other reasons because she refuses that contact. A Navy Man is the main contender who is trying to get Mary. But he is not looking for love. He is only interested in taking Mary and he is rejected, even when he tries to present a doll to Mary’s daughter. Because Mary has a daughter and this daughter is maybe the crucible or the key to the situation.
  16. 16. 16 Mary’s daughter wants a story, a bedtime story but Jones is unable to provide one and the only story she will get will come from her mother Mary, but then it is not a real bedtime story, except if the objective were to create in her frigidity and give her a nightmare. “MARY: Walk by the Spirit, and do not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh; for these are opposed to each other, so that you cannot do the things that you would. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are plain: fornication, impurity, anger, strife – and I warn you, as I warned you before, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faith: against such there is no law. And those who belong to Christ have crucified the flesh with its affections and desires.” Love then is impossible just as much as life is impossible. “MAN: Jesus, look at this guy. This guy is drunk. . . What is a man? He eats. He drinks. He fucks. He shits. He dies. Man is what he is and then he dies. God made it so. If I was a junkie, I would shoot up. If I was a pimp, I would pimp. If I was a killer, I would kill. If I was a drunk, I would drink. Man is what he is and then he rots in the ground. This is how it is for us. The world is a shithole. All is folly.” And the world is only a reverberating echo in the ears of Mary’s girl. The world is a dream based on the echo of a reverberation. And if Mary has a lot of imagination about what she would do with Jones: “I’ll unzip your pants and pull them off, and I’ll hold your dick in my hand, and I’ll rub my thumb up and down the bottom of your dick from the base to the tip, where the vein is, I will rub, and I will take the tip between my fingers, and I’ll move my fingers back and forth until it’s hard and growing, and then I’ll lick it until it’s wet and shining, and I will make circles with my tongue, I will do this, all around the tip and where it curves in and then out again, my tongue will find that place, and I will trace the vein the length that it goes, and then I’ll take it, all of it, in my mouth, and pull it back and in and gently, I will do this, gently press it against my teeth so that it catches a little, that is what I will do.”
  17. 17. 17 The point is that she does not do it with and to Jones because she is distracted by some Navy Man and she runs away with him into the crowd. And this Mary gets merged with the Virgin Mary in scene 18: “(Jones dances with the Virgin Mary. She is all long hair and through her hair all through her hair there are so many flowers, they fall over everything they cover everything they bloom so many you can’t count them. The Virgin is electric. Her lips are electric. Her hands burn. Lisa tells the little girl the story . . . Jones falls. He is electrified. The Virgin Mary disappears.)” The story told by Lisa is about a woman only designated as “she” who is the queen of the ocean and she is merged to the Holy Virgin and the Virgin electric. Jones’ love then is some kind of electrocution but it has no future. Right after this very symbolical love electrocution he falls into trouble with the police for the second time. This lack of structure, this deconstructed world, this temptation Mary represents and yet the frustration she brings, the castration she is morally and physically, all that leads to a dramatic end, and actually can’t lead to anything else. “(Jones stabs Mary again and again, and then he runs away.)” He runs way into the night to reappear in a bar where Lisa and a man see the blood on his hands. He runs away again and he gives us his state of mind, his desire to get rid of his skin: “I wanted to I wanted to peel off my skin. I wanted to peel off my skin, and fold it up, and put it in a box. I wanted to disappear. (Jones goes into the night.)” Because it is all a question of skin, love might be possible if the skin were taken off. The conclusion comes with Mary’s girl speaking of her mother. There is little love in all that, apart from big strong hands to touch and to take, and apart from eyes that are half closed. All the rest is lost in time, at least a hundred years ago, and lost among strangers all around. No father, no authority, no perspective. “MARY’S GIRL: My mom’s hands are big and white. My mom’s hands are big and strong.
  18. 18. 18 And when she picks me up All the sound all the light My mom This was a hundred years ago And all around her are strangers. The ocean. The sky. All there is all there ever was. And she’s looking out at me. And her eyes are half-closed like she’s looking at the sun.” The alienated world of superficial epidermis is thus transmitted from mother to daughter forever and ever. This is the direct image of the genocide of Indians. Nothing survives in that mess. All the men have been taken away. The only one left is corrugated in his mind and the transient ones are just interested in carnal consumption and eventually, accidently even, make some children to continue the cursed fate of that genocide, since these men are Navy men or cops or just plain strangers visiting this world that is a brothel. Who can ignore Post Genocide Traumatic Stress Syndrome? Dr Jacques COULARDEAU AMAZON VERSION We have here an absolutely disorganized world and yet that disorganization seems to be structured. Jones, the main character, seems to be confronted to a hectic messy world. He wants to love but he is haunted by a past of humiliation and a present of alienation. The two police scenes are typical of both provocation and humiliation from the police side when Jones is just not able to react and is doing nothing, wrong or right, anyway.
  19. 19. 19 His girl friend Mary, the well named though cursed, is totally cut off from any attachment. “I am dreaming of men. They fall out of the sky. They fall and they crash into buildings and some of them get caught in the trees. Some of them hit the ground and break into a lot of little pieces and I pick up all the pieces I see and I take them home with me and I sew the pieces all together anyway into this thing.” And she reconstructs these men but she cannot satisfy her desire. Her friend Lisa is not better even if maybe less destructured but yet she is only confronted to direct sexual solicitation: “He says he’ll give me ten bucks if he can put his hand on my thigh. . . MAN: I want to put my hand on your thigh. I’ll give you five bucks. . . I would like to put my hand on your thigh. I’ll give you ten bucks.” At least she does not have any contact even if it were only monetary because anyway it does not work, among other reasons because she refuses that contact. A Navy Man is the main contender who is trying to get Mary. But he is not looking for love. He is only interested in taking Mary and he is rejected, even when he tries to present a doll to Mary’s daughter. Because Mary has a daughter and this daughter is maybe the crucible or the key to the situation. Mary’s daughter wants a story, a bedtime story but Jones is unable to provide one and the only story she will get will come from her mother Mary, but then it is not a real bedtime story, except if the objective were to create in her frigidity and give her a nightmare. “MARY: Walk by the Spirit, and do not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh; for these are opposed to each other, so that you cannot do the things that you would. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are plain: fornication, impurity, anger, strife – and I warn you, as I warned you before, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faith: against such there is no law. And those who belong to Christ have crucified the flesh with its affections and desires.” Love then is impossible just as much as life is impossible. “MAN: Jesus, look at this guy. This guy is drunk. . . What is a man? He eats. He drinks. He fucks. He s***s. He dies. Man is what he is and then he dies. God made it so. If I was a junkie, I would shoot up. If I was a pimp, I would pimp. If I was a killer, I would kill. If I was a drunk, I would drink. Man is what he is and then he rots in the ground. This is how it is for us. The world is a s***hole. All is folly.”
  20. 20. 20 And the world is only a reverberating echo in the ears of Mary’s girl. The world is a dream based on the echo of a reverberation. And if Mary has a lot of imagination about what she would do with Jones: “I’ll unzip your pants [then come 153 words to describe a fellatio.] The point is that she does not do it with and to Jones because she is distracted by some Navy Man and she runs away with him into the crowd. And this Mary gets merged with the Virgin Mary in scene 18: “(Jones dances with the Virgin Mary. She is all long hair and through her hair all through her hair there are so many flowers, they fall over everything they cover everything they bloom so many you can’t count them. The Virgin is electric. Her lips are electric. Her hands burn. Lisa tells the little girl the story . . . Jones falls. He is electrified. The Virgin Mary disappears.)” The story told by Lisa is about a woman only designated as “she” who is the queen of the ocean and she is merged to the Holy Virgin and the Virgin electric. Jones’ love then is some kind of electrocution but it has no future. Right after this very symbolical love electrocution he falls into trouble with the police for the second time. This lack of structure, this deconstructed world, this temptation Mary represents and yet the frustration she brings, the castration she is morally and physically, all that leads to a dramatic end, and actually can’t lead to anything else. “(Jones stabs Mary again and again, and then he runs away.)” He runs way into the night to reappear in a bar where Lisa and a man see the blood on his hands. He runs away again and he gives us his state of mind, his desire to get rid of his skin: “I wanted to I wanted to peel off my skin. I wanted to peel off my skin, and fold it up, and put it in a box. I wanted to disappear. (Jones goes into the night.)” Because it is all a question of skin, love might be possible if the skin were taken off.
  21. 21. 21 The conclusion comes with Mary’s girl speaking of her mother. There is little love in all that, apart from big strong hands to touch and to take, and apart from eyes that are half closed. All the rest is lost in time, at least a hundred years ago, and lost among strangers all around. No father, no authority, no perspective. “MARY’S GIRL: My mom’s hands are big and white. My mom’s hands are big and strong. And when she picks me up All the sound all the light My mom This was a hundred years ago And all around her are strangers. The ocean. The sky. All there is all there ever was. And she’s looking out at me. And her eyes are half-closed like she’s looking at the sun.” The alienated world of superficial epidermis is thus transmitted from mother to daughter forever and ever. This is the direct image of the genocide of Indians. Nothing survives in that mess. All the men have been taken away. The only one left is corrugated in his mind and the transient ones are just interested in carnal consumption and eventually, accidently even, make some children to continue the cursed fate of that genocide, since these men are Navy men or cops or just plain strangers visiting this world that is a brothel. Who can ignore Post Genocide Traumatic Stress Syndrome? Dr Jacques COULARDEAU OLIVER MAYER – RAGGED TIME – 1994 The play is cut in two acts and the two acts have different things to say. The first act is a strange vision of Charleston after the Civil War and Reconstruction. The world is divided in all and many shades of black and one shade of white. It creates an ambient generalized and constant racial vision and by racial we have to understand racist. This vision is both surprising and probably realistic. You always find something under you, lower than you, smaller than you. The price for a prostitute is typical: “dollar for a colored, dollar fifty for a white girl. But a Jewess was a bargain, only a dollar twenty-five.”
  22. 22. 22 And that brings the Jews into the picture because of Abe, a Jew from up North arriving here to sell Hearst’s papers. In this first act he clearly states his religion and his admiration for America that is the country of liberty and everyone should understand it, feel and be free. He is actually going to Cuba to fight in the press-made war there to liberate the Cubans from the Spaniards. In front of him we have a black prostitute Freda who tries to look as yellow as possible. She has a son Ignacio she actually sells to Gary, one of the two blind black street singers. Ross, blind from birth, was the mentor of Gary, blinded because he looked too much at white girls. Ignacio plays the piano. He is attracted by Gary who buys him from Freda to be his lead boy, but he mistreats him though the boy learns from Gary both music and singing. Before leaving with Ignacio Gary sings a little to get some money since he spent all his stash to buy the boy. Ignacio joins in heartily. The gospel on Daniel is surprising, Daniel the prophet who can read what God writes on walls. Ignacio is quite a rich improvement for Gary and his taking part in that gospel brings in a lot of money. But Daniel is thrown into the lion’s den in this version and we could imagine Ignacio is thrown into his own lion’s den, the lions being the people around him, his master and his audience. Ross who would like to use him carnally, the way he used Gary when Gary was his lead boy, is one lion. Gary who wants to use the boy as a slave to make money and bring him some comfort is a second lion. Freda, his mother who sold him, is a third lion. And we must not forget White Shadow who speaks for all whites. Ignacio is Mexican but very white. So Gary being black, and since he is not aware of this fact because he is blind, is bound to run into a problem worded as follows by White Shadow: “This new generation ain’t worth shucks. They don’t know their history. They just don’t know here they come from. And they sure as heck fire don’t know where they’re headed.” The second act sees some changes some time later. Ignacio is used by both Ross and Gary, at least musically, though the carnal desires of Ross are not specified as satisfied by the boy. Gary is not leaning that way. Abe is back from Cuba and he uses Freda’s services at first as a prostitute but the relations shifts to something more personal. The two funnies or vaudevillians from the comics section of Hearst’s press who were marginal in the first act are going to play an essential role in this second act.
  23. 23. 23 Abe discovers Ignacio is the slave of the musicians and he wants to free him with Freda though he does not know she sold him. Abe “can see the writing on the wall” but he does not see the monetary exchange that took place between Freda and Gary. So they both go after Ignacio together anyway. But they can’t find him because the two vaudevillians have taken him into the world of comics by making him climb up into a tree like Jack climbed up the beanstalk. The two vaudevillians are called Yellow and Sanctimonious. They start dressing Ignacio like a cartoon character, a Mexican boy, and they try to teach him some music but he cannot get to the happy tune they want. He can only play blues or black music, the ragtime. They also teach him a few useful things about his life and his lot: “YELLOW: The lovely lady who sold you in the first place. SANCTIMONIOUS: Without even offering you a percentage.” That’s market economy and free enterprise that refuses slavery and considers every transaction should bring a profit to the people concerned. They also try to teach him about music but they have a very strict vision of things: “SANCTINMONIOUS: Music is a whipping post! We freed you from all that! And what do you do? You sit there and stare at us with the shackle in your hand! YELLOW: It’s enough to give me the blues. SANCTINONIOUS: And what do you do? You play the uke! YELLOW: Really give me the blues. SANCTIMONIOUS: Americans are happy! They like to laugh! They like a joke! Even if it happens to be on them! They don’t want blues! They want action! Thrills!” But Ignacio starts crying and playing some sad bluesy music on the ukulele. And an answer finally comes from him: “SANCTOMONIOUS: What are you trying to be? (Ignacio stops playing, wipes his eyes, smiles.) IGNACIO: Free, I guess.”’ Which is just what the comics cannot understand. But under the tree the people are becoming sour and bitter. Abe finally understand what Freda has done. And the discussion on slavery is revealing for black people.
  24. 24. 24 “GARY: See, I had to find a way to live. And knowing no difference, I lived like a slave. And I put that in the music. And I gave that music to the boy. I made him my slave. And you all would do the same if you could. FREDA: Us? Wake up! Slave days over! ROSS: Young lady, my folks was slaves. Your folks was slaves. All our folks was slaves. That’s something we got in common. Then, by god, how’s it come to pass that we become the slavers now? ABE: Slavers? FREDA: I ain’t no slaver! GARY: You just sell the meat. FREADA: You bought it. GARY: Indeed I did. ABE (chastened): Guess, I did too.” This passage is ambiguous because the slave who is discussed here is the boy, but at the same time “meat” can mean the boy but it also means the prostitute. Hence Freda speaks of the boy but Abe seems to understand the woman. And then they all come to realize they are phonies. During that time Ignacio little by little realizes he wants to remain human. “My mama . . . My papa . . . They come across, from Mexico . . . They came . . . For me. They came for me. They tried . . . They tried to give me . . . They tried to give me . . . This one chance . . . Let me be free . . . I have a mother! A father! I have a history! People! Even if they’re not here. Even if they never come back. I have them. I have them here. (Pounds his heart) He decides to go down, but he remains hidden till Abe and Freda go. But they go after White Shadow is killed by them when he airs some racist declaration: “What’s really going on here? Blind men, whores, Jews, n*****s? Talk about a motley crew. . . Slavery won’t die. . . Maybe you call it something different now. But a rose by any other name smells just as much to high heaven.” Then Ross goes in his turn. Ignacio comes out of the shadow and goes back to Gary and they sing together.
  25. 25. 25 “I will do my last singing. “I will take my last journey. “I will do my last travelling. “I will do my last travelling in this land, child.” And Yellow will have the last word: “Another sucker bites the dust.” And that is both luminous and sad. In fact these black people who transposed their slavery trauma into their music have some kind of resilience to the resurgence of racism and they can kill the representative of that ideology. But it is by remaining within the ragtime tradition that they free themselves, not by going deculturated as Hearst would like it to be, and I did say “it” because for Hearst human beings are just pawns in a geopolitical landscape. At the same time they seem to reproduce the old relations between them as if nothing had changed, but the author seems to imply something has changed at the end and Gary might become a good master, and Ignacio a free slave. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU PEDRO R. MONGE-RAFULS – TRASH, A MONOLOGUE – 1995 A sad and small monologue. Jesus/Jose/ Joe is not clear at all about his objectives in life. He is constantly dreaming as if life was impossible for him. He is dreaming in Cuba when he wants to marry and have twelve children. The first opportunity to leave the island comes and he leaves alone without his future wife. He is dreaming a life of freedom and success in the USA and only goes from one dead end to another blind alley. No jobs because no education since he did not finish it in Cuba. No education in the USA because no money to pay for it and to live on. Social services are chains on the legs. And he has to accept to be a hustler to make money to survive. He is black and has plenty of stuff to sell as for that. Luckily he sticks to no drug and no stealing.
  26. 26. 26 He finally dreams to go back to Florida where a friend who arrived with him has made it properly and could give him a job. But the night before leaving he is waiting for a bus in Brooklyn to go home when a white man approaches him. For some hustling of course with a promise of money. And it ends badly. That’s what happens when you have a gun and shouldn’t. And there is our dear surprise. Jesus/Jose/Joe is in prison, the convicted murderer of a well-known and appreciated priest, bound to die after his death row crossing of the Rubicon. A Rubicon of death. Not to Rome and the Empire but down to six feet under in a cheap casket, if any. Dreams lead to nightmares when you don’t have the stamina to work them out in real life. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU CHERRIE MORAGA – THE HUNGRY WOMAN, A MEXICAN MEDEA – 1995 This is a rewriting and expansion of the myth of Medea in a “post-modern” and “post- colonial” situation in America, where the South has become Aztlan due to a Mexican revolution that pays lip service to the old Aztec gods with Jason having an important position there; where the white society up North has cleansed itself entirely of any ethnic penetration; and where an in- between bumper zone is the survival locale of those who fit pn neither side, like for instance Medea, and whose capital is Phoenix. Medea has been exiled by Jason with her son Adolfo/Chac-Mool from Aztlan. She tries to go back to the Indian traditions of the Aztecs. The music is Pre-Columbian. The chorus of four women represents Cihuatateo, four warrior women who have died in childbirth. They embody the four directions and four colors of Aztec tradition: East and red, North and black, West and white, South and blue. They play most parts except Medea, Luna, Chac Mool and Mama Sal. All characters are held by female actresses except Chac-Mool who is the only male on stage. Medea is living the life of a lesbian with her lover Luna though she protests she is not a lesbian. She is a complicated woman, the mother of a son, only one – though she wanted a daughter to take care of her in old age and to spite her husband Jason already that long ago if not from the very start – and that son is getting of age – thirteen – to answer the call from his father to go back to Aztlan. The fact that all characters but one are females shows an essential point in Medea’s vision. She sees the world as purely feminine and woman as a pure mother, and a mother is only satisfied when she is the mother of a daughter. We are definitely inside Medea’s total schizophrenia dressed up as an Aztec myth. The key is given by Cihuatateo East who tells us the creation myth, Aztec style.
  27. 27. 27 “ Creation myth. In the place where the spirits live, there was once a woman who cried constantly for food. She had mouths everywhere. In her wrists, elbows, ankles, knees. . . And every mouth was hungry y bien, gritona. Bueno, to comfort la pubre, the spirits flew down and began to make grass and flowers from the dirt brown of her skin. From her greñas, they made forests. From those ojos negros, pools and springs. And from the slopes of her shoulders and senos, they made mountains y valles. At last she will be satisfied, they thought. Pero just like before, her mouths were everywhere, biting and moaning. . . opening and snapping shut. They would never be filled. Sometimes por la noche, when the wind blows, you can hear her crying for food.” The whole world was thus created from a hungry woman who was dismantled by the spirits, each part of her body becoming one element in the landscape and her mouth which was everywhere in her body found itself everywhere in the world. Note the spirits being hostile to that woman – though you can always say they tried to satisfy her – you may understand these spirits were males, though there is no real indication of the fact and the only goddess mentioned in the play is Coatlicue, the goddess represented by the moon, the full moon. She is the goddess of all mothers who died in childbirth. We find that Medea’s lesbian lover, Luna, is only the representation of this goddess. Medea’s problem is that she is a woman only in her motherhood. So she cannot accept her son departing to join his father in Aztlan where Jason is to marry a teenage local Apache girl who is barren. She gives him a territory but he needs his son to have a descent. Medea cannot refuse that departure but she can help her son on his departing night to have some good sleep. She puts him to sleep forever just not to be reduced to nothing by being deprived of her son and consequently of her motherhood. The lesbian debate is a false debate since Luna is the goddess Coatlicue and lesbianism makes Luna barren to motherhood, hence dependent on Medea’s love.
  28. 28. 28 She accuses Coatlicue of treason then and she starts ranting and raving after her crime about how the male god of war who is the son of her mother Coatlicue and thus her brother beheaded her when she was still a child. This story is a way to explain her devotion to la Luna, her real goddess, and Medea closes the tale by killing herself in a dream of her own where she is served the poison by Chac-Mool who is dead as we know. And Medea’s formula is absolutely frightening when she serves the poison to Chac Mool: “Sleep the innocent sleep of the children.” She dies when giving birth to herself and to do that she had to kill her son who then could kill her in the psychiatric hospital where she had been institutionalized, a metaphor of her total escape from the human world. Hence her son coming as a ghost to deliver the poison to her is the symbolical suicide her own crime is necessarily going to bring to her. She will not be negated in her motherhood but she will be negated in her own life. This becomes a whole metaphor of Chicana women who are nothing outside motherhood, who are goddesses when dying in childbirth, who have to deny men to remain mothers, hence to turn to lesbianism and eventually kill their own sons to save their schizophrenic vision, because these women are schizophrenic. If there is any future to Chicano culture, to the resurrection of Aztec culture, it will have to come through a vast slaying of fathers and sons in the name of mothers. That cleansing can come with sleep and not by shedding blood, but men will have to be transmiuted, but that is a vicious circle because then the sons thus transmuted will put their mothers to sleep the same way. The only solution is the end of humanity. If that is not schizophrenic what is? And the hungry woman will forever reign in the world. If that is not a Post Genocide Traumatic Stress Syndrome what is? Dr Jacques COULARDEAU
  29. 29. 29 Coatlicue Medea Jasonestrangement Chac-Mool Barren Apache Luna Her being a mother is her only defining feature Only exists in her motherhood Lesbian lover. Sexual compensation that did not endanger her motherhood to Chac-Mool with a potential second grade motherhood Willing to go back to his father This second wife endangers Medea’s motherhood because it takes away Chac Mool who is willing to go affiliation The absolute central schizophrenia of this Medea MONICA PALACIOS – GREETINGS FROM A QUEER SENORITA – 1995 A lesbian play is always surprising in a way or another, but in this case it is funny. Besides telling us how she discovered and developed her lesbianism, the author looks for all kinds of small funny episodes with boys, men and women. Yet the most striking element is how she turns simple straight male-dominated songs or phrases into female dominated and lesbian lexical items. She discovered when she was ten what she called Male Sexual Power and she wants to have that power as a woman. She enumerates the characteristics of this Male Sexual Power and she turns it into Female Sexual Power except that it is not based in men and oriented to women but based in and oriented to women only. This means that this Male Sexual Power should be specified as female-oriented, because you can have the same Male Sexual Power but male- oriented and then it is gay Male Sexual Power. In her case she cultivates a Female-oriented Female Sexual Power as opposed to the straight male-oriented Female Sexual Power. In other words it is highly indicative of a high level of female, gay and lesbian depreciation if you plainly speak of Male Sexual Power because it implies that sexual power can only exist in males running after females. In fact that is pure machismo.
  30. 30. 30 The funniest element is how she imitates straight men she does not like in putting female sexual terms everywhere the way obsessed males put their male sexual words everywhere like the F*** word or the C*** word with phrases like C*** F***ing attached to anything you can imagine and dangling there like a lexical dongle. Actually the conclusion with the medley of songs she calls a lullaby of Vagina is kind of surprising with Vagina attached to every single imaginable element from San Francisco – indeed – to cathedral – really? You must be joking. Just like gay literature or drama lesbian literature and drama seems to be slightly overdone, forced. These elements should become some day normal, part of normal life, that is to say anecdotic and not remarkable. Love has many shades, as we all know, of many colors, like a famous rainbow flag, and plain sexual intercourse is often a tremendous reduction of that love to a narrow palette of one or two shades of one single color. But one element is a lot more important than this sexual orientation. We are dealing with a Chicana woman. For an ex-colonized people to get over their Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Symbols they need two distance-building steps. In the case of Chicanos, who are the descendants of mostly exterminated Indian people or deculturized Indian survivors or Indian women surviving under duress genetically integrated into the main white or black colonizing people (free men or slaves), the first step is to get into exile inside Mexico and go back to Indian pockets of life or outside Mexico and become Chicanos or Chicanas in the USA. The second step is to set the female sex as the dominant visionary mind, which by the way goes back to old Indian/Aztec mythologies. In this present play the author reaches a third step in lesbian sexual orientation. But in this play, as opposed to others, the lesbian dimension is essentially a way to move away from one of the symptoms of the Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Syndrome, the macho male chauvinistic domination so common among Latinos. But it is no solution to this machismo or male chauvinism that has to be eradicated from the males themselves, with forceps if necessary, or like wisdom teeth. Under anesthesia? I guess so. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU CARIDAD SVICH – ALCHEMY OF DESIRE:DEAD-MAN4S BLUES, A PLAY WITH SONGS – 1994 It is difficult to decide if we are dealing with old Indian beliefs in ghosts or if we are dealing with modern superstitions fed my modern wars and American imperialism. It is nevertheless a pure feminine vision.
  31. 31. 31 It starts with Jamie, the dead husband of Simone. He was killed in the war. We can understand it is the Gulf War. Simone is the youngest woman: three other women are scaled along age-wise from forty to sixty. The oldest is said to be a seer. There is also a young teenage girl. Here the stake is to actually let go of Jamie, his ghost. It is important to do so and the house has to be cleaned to finalize the procedure. But Simone does not do it. Hence Jamie is here haunting the world. The four other women will do it but it will be too late for Simone. Simone follows Jamie’s ghost and she is burning his clothing to let go of him but she cannot because he is in her memory. Her desire is attached to the recollections she has of him and she cannot get rid of these recollections. So she follows Jamie and gets onto an empty train with him. When she realizes she cannot see people on the train she knows – or at least we know – they are beyond life, she knows she has passed on the other side. This play is strange because it associates women’s desires seen as different from love though intricately intertwined with it. It shows how women cannot get rid of the past and how they remember that past and keep it alive even when it is dead. Tradition is a curse of memory. Change is impossible and moving on is plainly out of grasp. What is important is that this curse is only the fate of people in touch with the dead, and we are dealing here with man-made death, the dead soldiers who died in an imperialistic war. Note we do not consider the dead people, soldiers or civilians who were killed by the imperialistic army. Love for the survivors on the imperialistic side brings a full haunting dependence on the memory and recollection of the dead. Though the play does not specify how Simone passes onto the other side, it states she does, no matter how. The songs that accompany this play are spiritual ritualistic songs that enable the passage to the other side by calling for the attention of spirits. We thus no longer have a play but a full ritual of the dead, their invocation, their communication with us and their dispatching themselves (or our dispatching them) on the road to the land of spirits which is rather an immense ocean to which they have to go, reviving thus the maritime origin of humanity in so many civilizations that it may be universal as if humanity descended from some species of fish, at least of some water spirits. The Indian roots are present for sure but also not clear. The belief in ghosts is more Mexican than Indian, though the belief in spirits is universal. The belief in the original and final sea is more Indian than Mexican and the only water spirit in the Christian tradition is a monster, Leviathan. Thus the spiritual atmosphere is definitely not western at all. The feminine precedence in it is also not western. We have here some older pre-Columbian heritage.
  32. 32. 32 Note in terms of Post Colonial Traumatic Stress Syndrome we have in this play the exile of Chicanos, and the n the sexual distance by seeing the world through the eyes of women. Note though there is no third distance in the sexual orientation of these women who define themselves within heterosexual love and desire. In fact it is a very pessimistic vision with one woman, the wife of dead Jamie, vanishing into death in the name of haunting and enslaving love, whereas all the other women are fulfilling a custom that is highly inefficient since Jamie really goes away when he is accompanied by his wife. Then we can wonder what the discourse on war may be. Is it the denunciation of the curse it imposes on surviving women? Is it the denunciation of the useless death of soldiers and the useless suffering of surviving wives and women? And we can wonder why this vision is limited to one side of the war and on that side to Latinos, or Chicanos, without actually speaking of the fact that blacks and Chicanos/Latinos are vastly over-represented among enlisted GIs and also among the victims on the front of such imperialistic wars. In other words I find the play moving but one-sided. War is a crime against humanity, not against the surviving spouses of dead soldiers, be they men or women, gay, lesbian or straight, Indian or white Americans. Note the absence of any allusion to black GIs so disproportionately represented among the US armed forces and military casualties. Dr Jacques COULARDEAU
  33. 33. 33
  34. 34. 34 THÉÂTRE ET TÉLÉOLOGIE CATHARTIQUE ou LET’S CUT OFF OUR NOSES TO SPITE GOD’S FACE (PART ONE) Dr Jacques COULARDEAU C’est un long voyage au cœur des arts de la scène que nous allons faire à travers dix siècles d’histoire. Tous nos arts poussent leurs racines dans un héritage judéo-chrétien fort ancien, sans parler de la mythologie grecque. L’histoire des dix derniers siècles d’arts dramatiques est marquée par un long parcours progressif d’une acceptation de la téléologie judéo-chrétienne à sa négation absolue au profit d’une téléologie « humaniste » dont la forme ultime est le scientisme naturaliste ou social de Darwin et Marx (et surtout de leurs continuateurs). Depuis une dizaine d’années, sans que jamais la téléologie judéo- chrétienne ne disparaisse complètement, on voit les téléologies scientistes atteindre l’extrême fin de leur développement et laisser la voie à la recherche et l’expression de téléologies plus ou moins imaginaires qui retrouvent les téléologies anciennes ou récupèrent les modèles de celles-ci. Malraux, qui avait vécu la montée progressive des téléologies scientistes, avait bien senti le vide que celles-ci créaient et le manque que les hommes allaient tôt ou tard ressentir. C’est tout le sens de sa déclaration sibylline que le 21ème siècle sera le siècle des religions. Disons d’emblée que l’homme (dès le 19ème siècle au moins), face à la montée des scientismes, a imaginé la science fiction qui permettait de pousser ces scientismes jusqu’à l’absurde. C’est là le sens de H.G. Wells et de Jules Verne. Plus tard ce monde de la science fiction se peuple d’êtres venus d’ailleurs et réduit ainsi le monde humain à un pion sur un échiquier. Cet imaginaire de la science fiction, de l’horreur ou du fantastique, de Fritz Lang à Stephen King (et bien d’autres encore) a entretenu pendant tout ce temps une téléologie non scientiste, non scientifique même, non objective le plus souvent, répondant ainsi au besoin de téléologie non contrôlable et non rationnelle de l’homme. Nous vivons aujourd’hui les prémisses du siècle des religions. Nous allons ainsi parcourir environ vingt-cinq siècles d’histoire humaine occidentale. Nous partirons des bases judéo-chrétiennes de la Bible, Ancien et Nouveau Testament, pour planter le décor. Puis nous passerons au théâtre (même si certains considèrent que la Bible est une mise en scène, sans jeu de mot sur ce dernier item lexical). Le Moyen Âge nous offrira des illustrations de la première phase d’une référence biblique triomphante. Puis les temps baroques nous montreront comment une distanciation progressivement se construit avec une référence à la nature et à la psychologie des personnages. Ensuite nous regarderons de prêt le révélateur « FAUST » de Marlowe à Gounod. Nous y verrons Dieu en train de mourir avant même la notice nécrologique de Hegel écrite en lettres d’or à la cheminée de la philosophie, sans parler de celle de Marx gravée dans le marbre de la stèle funéraire et mortifère de la lutte des classes comme explication finale et absolue du monde. Puis nous suivrons cette mort de Dieu chez le Juif (et cela est capital) Gustav Mahler et le Slave Igor Stravinsky (associé à Jean Cocteau). Nous déboucherons alors sur l’ère du cinéma et sur un monde qui n’a plus de Dieu, mais qui pourtant recherche une téléologie qu’il construit de toutes pièces, avec parfois le vieux modèle de la Genèse au fond des yeux. Et ce cinéma est le livre sacré des auditoires les plus larges qui sont formés, informés et même déformés ou conformés par
  35. 35. 35 ces images colorées et animées qu’on leur projette à longueur de journée, et de nuit, sur toutes sortes d’écran. Nous finirons ce voyage avec deux métaphores dramatiques. D’une part Good Bye Lenin, la métaphore de la disparition de la téléologie communiste, marxiste ou stalinienne, comme on veut. D’autre part La Passion du Christ de Mel Gibson, la métaphore du retour en force du modèle téléologique christique. Or ce sont là deux films dont le succès dépasse et de loin les auditoires directement concernés. Notre conclusion essaiera de répondre à la question suivante : Pourquoi des dizaines de millions de femmes et d’hommes de tout âge se précipitent-ils pour voir ces films alors qu’ils ne se définiraient en rien comme communistes ou chrétiens ? Je tiens à faire une dernière remarque avant de commencer. J’essaierai, dans toute la mesure du possible, de ne pas reprendre des œuvres que j’ai déjà utilisées dans des articles précédents, et à défaut de pouvoir remplir cette condition, je prendrai ces œuvres déjà utilisées sous un angle et un éclairage j’espère totalement nouveaux. Ceci implique que je risque fort de faire des raccourcis dans mon parcours, raccourcis qui ne peuvent être compris et mis en perspective que dans la mesure où les analyses antérieures sont prises en considération. Cet article est donc la poursuite d’un travail de recherche fondamentale et globale sur la sémiologie dramatique et sur la catharsis portée par les arts de la scène, plus généralement par l’imaginaire. Je renvoie donc mes lecteurs à ces articles antérieurs. I./ LES BASES DE NOTRE CIVILISATION JUDÉO-CHRÉTIENNE : LA CONSTRUCTION DE LA TELEOLOGIE JUDEO-CHRETIENNE. a. La Genèse Ce livre de l’Ancien Testament pose une vision téléologique totale, avec en plus une mise en scène et une mise en dialogue qui en font un archétype de la vision dramatique des hommes, une vision qui ne pose pas le néant au début de la création, une création qui ne se fait pas ex nihilo : « Au commencement, Dieu créa le ciel et la terre. Or la terre était vide et vague, les ténèbres couvraient l’abîme et un vent de Dieu agitait la surface des eaux. » (Genèse, 1:1) Cette notion de création ex nihilo n’apparaît que dans le deuxième livre des Macchabées (7:28). La cosmogonie du premier chapitre est construite selon une hiérarchie qui va du plus large ou général au plus petit et particulier, hiérarchie qui est inversée en ce qui concerne la valeur des choses, la dignité des éléments créés : ciel, terre et lumière ; firmament ; terre, mers, verdure, herbes, arbres ; soleil, lune, jour et nuit ; poissons et oiseaux ; bestiaux, bestioles, bêtes sauvages, l’homme et la femme. Cette hiérarchie montante pose un soubassement matériel ternaire : air, terre, eau, qui dicte la nature des êtres vivants animés créés ensuite selon une hiérarchie anthropocentrique : poissons, oiseaux, bestiaux, bestioles, bêtes sauvages, homme et femme. Remarquons d’emblée que cette hiérarchie qui pose la femme comme postérieure à l’homme et on le sait comme faite à partir d’un morceau de l’homme, pose cependant la femme comme l’élément ultime, donc dominant, la couronne de la création, la cerise sur le gâteau, selon les valeurs que l’on peut donner à cette touche finale. Mais page 41, note a, la Bible de Jérusalem va un peu plus loin dans le positionnement second de la femme : « L’hébreu joue sur les mots ‘ishsha pour « femme » et ‘ish pour « homme » », faisant du mot « femme » le dérivé du mot « homme ». (Cela rappelle le Ragnarok de la mythologie nordique qui fait l’inverse : le mot pour « homme » est dérivé du mot pour « femme », comme je l’ai montré dans mon étude pour Duels en scène n°2, 2004 : la tradition biblique fait de la femme l’élément second.) On peut alors se demander si le « péché originel » qui vient de la femme ultérieurement n’est pas le crime suprême car il porte le renversement absolu de la hiérarchie de cette création. C’est
  36. 36. 36 le sommet qui « trahit » et non pas un être qu’on pourrait considérer comme secondaire dans cet ordre hiérarchique. Mais tout le premier chapitre est écrit dans un style qui utilise trois discours distincts en ce qui concerne le Créateur. D’abord un discours du récit en tant que tel, au passé simple dans la Bible de Jérusalem, et c’est ce récit qui contient une fonction discursive de Dieu, celle de nomination qui consiste à donner des noms aux choses, mais une nomination généraliste. Dieu nomme les grands éléments de cette création. C’est l’homme qui recevra la mission dans le deuxième chapitre (2:19) de nommer toutes les créatures du monde. Cette fonction est donc limitée dans ce premier chapitre. Notons d’ailleurs que ce premier chapitre ne parle que de Dieu, alors que le deuxième chapitre met en scène Yahvé Dieu. Cet élément montre que les deux chapitres n’ont pas la même valeur dramatique (en plus de ne pas relever de la même période historique d’écriture si on en croit la Bible de Jérusalem du fait justement de ce nom de Dieu dans le deuxième chapitre, à partir du verset 4, deuxième chapitre qui donne un deuxième récit de la création). Ensuite un discours illocutionnaire performatif au subjonctif en français : « Dieu dit : ‘Que la lumière soit’ » renforcé par les suites systématiques en discours de récit qui entérine la réalisation de cette illocution performative : « et la lumière fut. » (1:3). Ce discours disparaît complètement dans le deuxième chapitre. Le troisième discours de ce premier chapitre est un ensemble d’ordre direct qui n’apparaissent qu’au sixième jour et qui s’adressent dans un premier temps à Dieu lui-même : « Faisons l’homme à notre image » (ce qui est peu différent du discours précédent surtout qu’il est redoublé d’une suite dans ce discours illocutionnaire performatif), puis à l’homme lui-même : « Soyez féconds, multipliez, emplissez la terre et soumettez- là … » Ensuite cet ordre se transforme en un mode d’emploi de la création qui n’est donc qu’une extension de l’ordre premier. Ainsi l’homme est posé comme créé par Dieu, dominé par Dieu, commandé par Dieu. L’homme est posé dans un univers qui le dépasse de par le créateur, de par ses dimensions, de par ses finalités, et pourtant un univers qu’il doit soumettre et exploiter pour sa vie, et plus tard sa survie. L’homme est aussi dépassé par cet univers parce que chaque élément dans l’univers a une fonction et une mission et que l’homme n’est qu’un élément dans cet univers, même s’il a mission de soumettre l’univers tout entier. Ces trois discours sont un élément structurant fondamental pour la conscience humaine : il s’agit de la première trinité de la Bible, la trinité discursive de ce premier chapitre. Notons que cela va changer dans le deuxième chapitre qui n’a plus de discours illocutionnaire performatif, mais seulement un récit au passé simple et un discours portant des ordres, des instructions de Dieu, vers lui-même d’abord, puis vers l’homme. Mais ce deuxième livre introduit un autre, et troisième discours, un discours explicatif, déductif qui fait suite à un discours exclamatif de l’homme dans sa fonction de nomination, puisque c’est lui qui donne nom à la femme. Ce discours explicatif est en plus anachronique en ce sens qu’il ne se satisfait pas de décrire mais il projette une explication sur le présent de l’écriture du texte : c’est là véritablement la première prémisse d’une téléologie à la fois matérielle et d’une certaine façon éthique car impliquant une loi d’interdit qui vient de la nature de la création, certes, mais qui est posée dans le présent d’écriture et fonde donc une loi de la société de ce présent : « C’est pourquoi l’homme quitte son père et sa mère et s’attache à sa femme, et ils deviennent une seule chair. » Cette ternarité est renforcée par une autre beaucoup plus fondamentale et structurante car elle concerne le monde créé, le monde matériel : les trois éléments naturels que sont le ciel (l’air), la terre et les mers (l’eau, d’ailleurs développée dans le deuxième chapitre avec des fleuves). On notera que ce ternarisme naturel est produit par deux moments binaires : d’abord la binarité ciel-terre, puis la binarité terre-mers. Ainsi cette
  37. 37. 37 double binarité à élément commun qui produit ainsi une ternarité, est reprise dans les animaux créés : poissons-oiseaux-bestiaux (bestioles, bêtes sauvages, ce qui rampe ou glisse sur terre), et cette fois cette ternarité n’est pas issue d’une double binarité à élément commun mais de deux moments successifs : le cinquième jour qui produit poissons et oiseaux et le sixième jour qui produit les bestiaux (etc). Notons la hiérarchie différente de ces ternarités : ciel-terre-mers par opposition à poissons (mers)-oiseaux (ciel)-bestiaux (terre). Plusieurs changements sont introduits : le couple initial ciel-terre est remplacé par le nouveau couple mers-ciel ; les mers qui sont troisièmes dans la première ternarité deviennent premières ; la terre qui est deuxième et l’élément commun entre les deux binarités successives devient troisième ; le ciel, premier dans la première ternarité, devient deuxième et donc l’élément central, cependant non redoublé. Cette vision des discours et des éléments qui fonde la création est un schéma structurant de la conscience humaine (sans oublier que l’on peut et doit penser que c’est l’existence de ce schéma structurant dans la conscience humaine de la société qui produit ce texte, qui produit cette ternarité dans ce texte). Je ne me pose jamais en termes de foi ou non dans le caractère sacré du texte. Mais ce caractère sacré donne à ce texte une force encore plus structurante, même si on peut considérer que cela n’est alors que l’ossification d’une structuration matériellement et pragmatiquement mise en place par la conscience humaine. Ce ne sont là que quelques éléments. Le dualisme parcourt profondément le premier chapitre, jour après jour, sauf le deuxième. On notera en plus que la création se fait en six jours, que le « vent de Dieu » fait son travail en six jours, soit trois fois deux, ou deux fois trois, et que ce six sera lourdement repris par le symbole de Salomon, le nombre de David, et son étoile, représentant la coupe divine tournée vers la terre et qui verse la lumière de Dieu dans la coupe humaine tournée vers le ciel et qui reçoit cette lumière de Dieu. Ce chiffre six est renforcé par le fait que Dieu n’a nommé que six éléments : le jour, la nuit, la terre, les mers, la lune et le soleil, soit trois groupes de deux éléments. Le septième jour est le jour à part, le jour de repos, le célèbre sabbat. Le deuxième chapitre ajoute l’« arbre de vie » sur terre, l’« arbre de la connaissance du bien et du mal » (notons qu’ils sont coordonnés et suivent les autres arbres, et que donc on peut les considérer comme différents, même si plus tard il n’en est pas ainsi) dans le « jardin en Eden ». C’est ce deuxième chapitre qui donne un ordre limitant à l’homme : « Tu peux manger de tous les arbres du jardin. Mais de l’arbre de la connaissance du bien et du mal tu ne mangeras pas, car, le jour où tu en mangeras, tu mourras. » Autre élément capital dans cette téléologie : l’homme a été créé immortel et la mort est expliquée ainsi, pour l’homme du temps présent de l’écriture, comme le résultat d’un interdit divin. Dieu dans ce deuxième chapitre ajoute un fleuve qui se divise en « quatre bras » (première intervention du chiffre quatre, alors que les éléments donnés précédemment ne sont qu’au nombre de trois, excluant le quatrième, le feu). Ces fleuves permettent à l’auteur de donner une géographie du pays. Le premier fleuve Pishôn contourne le pays de Havila et ce pays contient trois biens précieux : l’or, mis en avant par une répétition, le bdellium et la pierre de cornaline. Le deuxième fleuve Gihôn contourne le pays de Kush, le troisième fleuve Tigre coule à l’orient d’Assur et le quatrième fleuve est l’Euphrate mais n’est pas positionné géographiquement, ce qui introduit un double déséquilibre : trois fleuves sont géographiquement positionnés, deux contournent et un coule à l’orient d’Assur, et le premier contourne un pays qui contient trois richesses, dont la première est plus importante que les deux autres, et enfin un quatrième fleuve n’a qu’un nom et pas de lieu géographique. Ce sont ces jeux sur le binarisme, le ternarisme qui est un binarisme étendu, et le quaternarisme qui n’est qu’une extension du binarisme, qui montrent combien cela est issu de la
  38. 38. 38 conscience des hommes qui ont écrit ces textes. D’un singulier compact recouvrant un tout pluriel, on a tiré l’unité par étape successive qui posent, comme dans les langues, les formes de non singulier dont le singulier sera issu car on descend du pluriel compact vers l’unité. Quatre est le pluriel (le quadriel semble avoir disparu), trois est le triel, deux est le duel, et le singulier vient après. Cela pose dans le sens inverse, car l’esprit de l’homme renverse toujours ses propres inventions, que l’on a le singulier puis le duel, le triel, et au-delà, donc à partir de quatre, le pluriel. On notera que le pluriel n’est inventable qu’à partir du singulier et donc que ce pluriel est une remontée à partir de l’unité pourtant atteinte en dernier. On notera que nous n’avons pas cet élément UN-DEUX-TROIS-QUATRE dans le premier chapitre qui ne dépasse pas le ternarisme, et donc on peut accepter l’hypothèse de la Bible de Jérusalem que le second chapitre est postérieur : il l’est car il a inventé le quadriel, c’est à dire le pluriel. Dans le premier chapitre deux mouvements seulement existaient : le binarisme que l’on étendait au ternarisme puis une composition de binarismes, trois fois d’ailleurs en ce qui concerne Dieu, pour aller au-delà. Le quadriel ou quaternarisme dont je parle avec le deuxième chapitre est une extension du ternarisme. Le pluriel est donc produit par l’adjonction d’une unité au triel.i Le Chapitre trois raconte la chute de l’homme et son exclusion du jardin d’Eden. Outre le récit au passé simple, Dieu, systématiquement appelé Yahvé Dieu, a un discours illocutionnaire performatif au futur en direction du serpent comme de l’homme et de la femme : « Parce que tu as fait cela, maudit sois-tu entre tous les bestiaux et toutes les bêtes sauvages. Tu marcheras sur ton ventre et tu mangeras de la terre tous les jours de ta vie. Je mettrai une hostilité entre toi et la femme, entre ton lignage et le sien. Il t’écrasera la tête et tu l’atteindras au talon. » (3:14-15) ; « Je multiplierai les peines de tes grossesses, dans la peine tu enfanteras des fils. Ta convoitise te poussera vers ton mari et lui dominera sur toi. » (3:16) ; « Parce que tu as écouté la voix de ta femme et que tu as mangé de l’arbre dont je t’avais interdit de manger, maudit soit le sol à cause de toi ! A force de peine tu en tireras subsistance tous les jours de ta vie. Il produira pour toi épines et chardons et tu mangeras l’herbe des champs. A la sueur de ton visage tu mangeras ton pain, jusqu’à ce que tu retournes au sol, puisque tu en fus tiré. Car tu es glaise et tu retourneras à la glaise. » (3:17-19). C’est à ce moment là que l’homme nomme la femme « Eve » qui est dérivé de « hayah » qui signifie vivre, ce qui est parfaitement la même chose que dans le Ragnarok. La femme, seconde dans la Bible et première dans le Ragnarok, est l’identification de la vie. Mais ce chapitre de la Genèse introduit ainsi une téléologie différente de celle introduite dans les deux premiers chapitres. Dans les deux premiers chapitres on avait une téléologie de création et donc d’explication par le passé qui était vu comme éternel donc se projetant sur l’avenir. Dans le troisième chapitre la téléologie divine est une prédiction du futur, une projection directe de Dieu sur le futur. On a donc deux téléologies qui se succèdent : d’une part une téléologie rétrospective (remontée vers le passé puis retour au présent et à l’avenir), et une téléologie prospective (prédiction de l’avenir). On notera que la seconde prend appui sur le présent, ou présent récent de l’épisode du fruit, mais aussi sur le passé et la création, du moins en ce qui concerne l’homme à qui il est rappelé d’où il vient, de la glaise. On notera enfin que cette téléologie prospective est aussi une suite d’imprécations, donc elle est imprécative. On voit donc que le récit essaie d’expliquer le présent au moment du récit, l’aliénation de l’homme face à la nature, par la faute d’Adam et
  39. 39. 39 Eve dans le jardin de l’Eden. A ce niveau-là la téléologie prospective dont nous venons de parler en devient rétrospective. On a alors deux téléologies rétrospectives, la première qui est positive (création), la seconde qui est négative (punition). On voit donc comment ce récit confronte le fidèle à une dialectique entre deux téléologies, soit rétrospective et prospective dans le texte, soit positive et négative pour le moment du récit et l’avenir. On voit alors que chacune de ces deux téléologies est à la fois rétrospective et prospective mais de façon inversée dans le texte. La première est d’abord rétrospective (dans le discours) et ensuite prospective (par projection). La deuxième est d’abord prospective (dans le discours) et ensuite rétrospective (à partir du présent du narrateur). La première est positive et la seconde négative. Cela pose alors un Dieu dont la nature est double : Dieu créateur est donc bénéfacteur, Dieu imprécateur et donc punisseur. Cet ensemble téléologique est la base même de la culture, de l’idéologie, de la vision du monde portée par le monde judéo-chrétien, par le monde occidental. La dialectique des philosophes occidentaux prend ses racines dans cet héritage, même si Aristote avait pensé la dialectique avant l’installation du christianisme (ce livre de la Bible est bien antérieur au christianisme). Cette dialectique est posée comme extérieure à l’homme qui la subit. On pourrait comparer avec les dialectiques de l’Asie qui sont très souvent posées dans leur dimension intérieure à l’homme. Dans notre monde cette téléologie dialectique va varier dans l’élément extérieur mis en avant. L’approche religieuse pose la dialectique comme relevant de cette Genèse justement et donc de Dieu (et on sait le débat dramatique avec les Cathares par exemple qui posaient deux Dieux : un Dieu du bien et un Dieu du mal, toujours extérieurs à l’homme) ainsi que la vision diabolique du serpent qui pose, dès la Bible, un second être de dimension surnaturelle, Lucifer ou Satan, ange déchu qui a la charge de représenter le mal, la tentation, et la mission de punir les pécheurs, ceux qui cèdent à cette tentationii. L’approche des Lumières posera cette dialectique au niveau des concepts, éthiques pour Kant, formels pour Hegel, mais absolu de toute façon donc dépassant l’homme. L’approche marxiste posera cette dialectique comme fondée dans le mode de production et la propriété des moyens de production, donc encore une fois extérieure à l’homme. Il n’y aura un début de renversement de cette approche téléologique qu’avec Freud qui commencera à parler du bien et du mal comme étant intérieurs à l’homme, Eros contre Thanatos, la libido contre l’instinct de mort (on pourrait discuter sur la genèse de ces pulsions : sont-elles inscrites dans la chair de l’homme, ou sont-elles l’inscription dans son psychisme d’une situation extérieure d’aliénation ?). Nous n’entrerons pas dans ce débat ici. b- Caïn et Abel Cette dialectique est renforcée dans le chapitre quatre concernant Caïn et Abel où on finit le passage du nom de Dieu de Dieu à Yahvé Dieu et enfin à Yahvé. La dialectique est posée par la rivalité entre les deux frères. Caïn est fratricide et donc banni par Dieu mais marqué d’un signe qui le protège. Il deviendra le fondateur d’une immense lignée : l’agriculture sédentaire, les forgerons, les villes (Hénok, du nom de son premier fils). Ses fils posent aussi des jalons de vie. Yabal fondateur des pasteurs nomades (de Ybl = conduire). Yubal ancêtre de ceux qui jouent de la lyre et du chalumeau (de yôbel = trompette). Tubal ou Tubal Caïn : forgerons de cuivre et de fer (de Tubal = peuple du Nord, ce que nous devons garder en mémoire car Goliath sera le représentant de ces peuples du Nord adonné à la métallurgie ; et Caïn = forgeron). Naama (la jolie, l’aimée) est généralement vue comme la fondatrice de la lignée des prostituéesiii. On a ici un ensemble sémantique d’un autre monde que celui d’Abel qui est le monde des pasteurs nomades et des populations égaillées dans le désert. C’est le monde de la ville, de ses artisanats, dont les artisans du métal, et de ses plaisirs que sont la musique – et bien sûr le théâtre –, et
  40. 40. 40 l’amour non pas dans sa dimension purement procréatrice mais dans sa dimension de beauté, de jouissance. On peut voir dans cette vision l’ancêtre de Babylone. c- Abraham et Isaac L’épisode d’Abraham et de son fils Isaac renforce la vision d’un Dieu autoritaire, arbitraire car il a ses raisons bien à lui et ne les partage pas, et d’un homme obéissant, soumis jusqu’à l’horreur de l’infanticide si cela est demandé par Dieu. Cet épisode est la symbolisation (et l’appel) cathartique de la fin des sacrifices humains dans cette société. d- David et Goliath L’épisode de David et Goliath renforce l’opposition entre une civilisation de la pierre, du désert, du nomadisme d’un côté et une civilisation du métal, de la force violente, du Nord de l’autre côté. On sait l’issue du conflit. On sait aussi que cela entraîne une montée en pouvoir de David qui causera bien des problèmes à Saul. Nous y reviendrons avec Haendel. e- Daniel L’épisode de Daniel, le prophète, est beaucoup plus complexe. Il révèle la puissance de Dieu qui peut y compris mettre son peuple élu en esclavage pour produire l’avenir. C’est là une téléologie qui devient fréquente dans le monde judéo-chrétien. Dieu a ses raisons que la raison ne doit pas connaître. Tout est le signe de la volonté de Dieu, même les pires malheurs, et ces derniers, comme les meilleurs bonheurs, ne sont que la punition (par opposition à la récompense) de Dieu. Mais Daniel introduit une dimension fondamentale dans la Bible puisqu’il transforme la justice sémitique où deux témoins concordants suffisent pour prouver la culpabilité de l’accusé : il introduit le contre-interrogatoire de ces témoins et le droit à la défense, et ce pour une femme, Suzanne. C’est là une évolution que le Christ va porter encore plus loin avec le concept de pureté nécessaire chez les accusateurs et bien sûr les lapidateurs. C’est aussi, nous le verrons, une dimension fondamentale de perversion de la tradition biblique dans le procès contre Jésus où aucune de ces deux dimensions n’est respectée. On note ici cependant que cette intervention de Daniel dans la justice des hommes montre que la téléologie divine ne suffit plus. Il y a là une importante dimension sociale et humaine : l’homme doit gérer ses affaires selon des principes simples comme le principe de justice et ne pas s’en remettre aveuglément à une tradition définie et posée comme divine, révélée. Ce n’est pas la première fois que cela apparaît dans la Bible, mais c’est extrêmement spectaculaire et signifiant du fait de la déportation des Juifs à Babylone, du pillage et de la destruction du Temple, de la prédiction de la chute de Balthazar sur intervention surnaturelle mais devant un auditoire et dans une forme fortement théâtralisée. On sait que ce livre de Daniel sera l’enjeu de débats entre les catholiques et les protestants, les protestants bannissant une partie de ce livre de leur version de la Bible. On sait aussi que ce livre a fait l’objet d’un opéra au 13ème siècle en la Cathédrale de Beauvais. Nous y reviendrons. f- Les quatre évangiles Nous en arrivons naturellement aux quatre évangiles que nous devons approcher dans le détail. Il n’est bien sûr pas question de les examiner dans leur ensemble, mais de simplement nous consacrer aux passages qui couvrent la Passion du Christ. Il s’agit aussi de voir comment une téléologie s’insère dans ces descriptions de la Passion. Notre justification ici est de servir de base à notre approche ultérieure des quatre Passions de Jean Sébastien Bach. La première remarque est que trois évangiles (Matthieu, Marc et Luc) commencent le récit de cette Passion au repas de la Cène, donc la veille, le jeudi, alors que Jean commence le récit de la Passion à l’arrestation du Christ le vendredi à la fin de la nuit.

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