UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Art and morality in the novels of Restif de la Bretonne 1973

You don't seem to have a PDF reader installed, try download the pdf

Item Metadata

Download

Media
UBC_1973_A1 G73.pdf [ 10.76MB ]
UBC_1973_A1 G73.pdf
Metadata
JSON: 1.0100919.json
JSON-LD: 1.0100919+ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 1.0100919.xml
RDF/JSON: 1.0100919+rdf.json
Turtle: 1.0100919+rdf-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 1.0100919+rdf-ntriples.txt
Citation
1.0100919.ris

Full Text

ART AND MORALITY IN THE NOVELS OP RESTIF DE LA BRETONNE by ELIZABETH ANN GRANNIS M.A., U n i v e r s i t y of Washington, 1966 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY i n the Department of FRENCH We ac c e p t t h i s t h e s i s as con f o r m i n g to the r e q u i r e d s t a n d a r d THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA May, 1973 In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f the r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r an advanced degree a t the U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree t h a t the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and s t u d y . I f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may be g r a n t e d by the Head o f my Department o r by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l n o t be a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . Department o f The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia Vancouver 8, Canada ABSTRACT The p r e s e n t s t u d y i s an a n a l y s i s of the s t r u c t u r a l and t h e m a t i c r e l a t i o n s h i p between the e a r l i e s t n o v e l s of R e s t i f de l a Bretonne (t h o s e i n s p i r e d by p o p u l a r w r i t e r s such as Mme R i c c o b o n i , V o l t a i r e , P r e v o s t , Marivauos and Rousseau), and the f i r s t of h i s a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s , Le Paysan pe r - v e r t i , p u b l i s h e d i n 1775. R e s t i f c r i t i c i s m has tended t o f o c u s on a s p e c t s of r e a l i s m m a n i f e s t i n the s e r i e s of a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s i n i t i a t e d by Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . T h i s c r i t i c a l f o c u s n e g l e c t s b o t h the pre-Paysan n o v e l s , which manifest:, a s t r o n g tendency t o propagandize i n f a v o r of b o u r g e o i s m o r a l i t y , and the a u t h o r ' s own a s s e r t i o n s t h a t he c o n s i s t e n t l y wrote moral n o v e l s . The p r e s e n t comparison between R e s t i f s n o n - a u t o b i o - g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s and Le Paysan p e r v e r t i attempts t o show t h a t R e s t i f ' s e a r l i e s t n o v e l s , and h i s a f f i r m a t i o n s of moral co n c e r n , may i n f a c t be i n c l u d e d i n a coherent d e f i n i t i o n of h i s c o n t r i - b u t i o n t o f i c t i o n . B o th the n o n - a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s and Le Paysan p e r v e r t i e x p l o r e a common moral problem, f o r a l l of the c h a r a c t e r s a r e i n v o l v e d i n surmounting the o b s t a c l e o f p a s s i o n i n o r d e r t o a t t a i n h a p p i n e s s i n c o n f o r m i t y t o s o c i a l v a l u e s . The heroes of the n o n - a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s a r e d i s t i n g u i s h e d by t h e i r easy s u c c e s s i n t h i s r e g a r d , i n c o n t r a s t t o the m u l t i p l e d i f f i c u l t i e s encountered by the c h a r a c t e r s of Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . A n a l y s i s of the p l o t s t r u c t u r e s , or the r e a s o n s f o r the c h a r a c t e r s ' s u c c e s s or f a i l u r e i n a t t a i n i n g h a p p i n e s s , r e v e a l s , however, t h a t the n o v e l s share a p e s s i m i s t i c v i s i o n o f the p o s s i b i l i t i e s o f p r a c t i c i n g v i r t u e , however e s s e n t i a l t o h a p p i n e s s i t may be. i i i The f i r s t c h a p t e r d e a l s w i t h the e a r l y n o n - a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s , from La F a m i l l e v e r t u e u s e (1767) through La Femme dans l e s t r o i s e t a t s ( 1 7 7 3 ) . These n o v e l s a re shown t o be c h a r a c - t e r i z e d by p l o t s i n which the hero i s p a s s i v e , f o r h i s u l t i m a t e h a p p i n e s s i n v i r t u e i s brought about by h i s f a m i l y and f r i e n d s , and/or c o i n c i d e n c e . These f o r c e s c o n s p i r e t o c r e a t e a w o r l d i n which the hero's p a s s i o n a l m o t i v a t i o n s appear t o be sources o f unhappiness. T h i s emphasis on causes e x t e r n a l t o the main c h a r a c t e r s i m p l i e s t h a t i n the R e s t i v i a n view, human n a t u r e (of which the q u a l i t e m a i t r e s s e i s s e n s i b i l i t y ) does not of i t s e l f cause the i n d i v i d u a l t o e l e c t v i r t u e as the o n l y source of h a p p i n e s s . A l t h o u g h s e n s i b i l i t y d i s p o s e s t o a s e n t i m e n t a l attachment t o v i r t u e , i t a l s o d i s p o s e s t o p a s s i o n , which i s l i k e l y t o dominate the i n d i v i d u a l ' s b e h a v i o r i n the absence of r i g i d c o n t r o l . The second c h a p t e r shows t h a t by f o c u s i n g on the s e n s i - b i l i t y of the hero as the dynamic element i n the a c t i o n , Le Paysan p e r v e r t i d e v e l o p s d i r e c t l y t he i m p l i c a t i o n s of the e a r l i e r n o v e l s . When the hero i s d e p r i v e d of the p r e s s u r e s o f s o c i a l c o n t e x t and c o i n c i d e n c e , the p a s s i o n a l a s p e c t o f h i s s e n s i b i l i t y does i n f a c t s e p a r a t e him from v i r t u e . P a s s i o n a l s o s e p a r a t e s him from h a p p i n e s s , because i t f r u s t r a t e s the s e n t i m e n t a l a s p i r a t i o n s t o v i r t u e t h a t he shares w i t h the e a r l i e r h e r o e s . The p l o t s of the secondary c h a r a c t e r s i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i a r e d i s c u s s e d as complementary i l l u s t r a t i o n s o f the i n d i v i d u a l ' s i n a b i l i t y t o dominate h i s n a t u r e i n the i n t e r e s t of h a p p i n e s s . The s t u d y l e a d s t o the c o n c l u s i o n t h a t i n the n o v e l s examined, a w o r l d view emerges i n which the human c o n d i t i o n i s r e p r e s e n t e d as a c o n f l i c t between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s a s p i r a - t i o n t o permanence and s t a b i l i t y , on the one hand, and the r a r e l y surmountable m o b i l i t y of a human n a t u r e t h a t tends t o c r e a t e chaos, on the o t h e r . The study c o n c l u d e s w i t h a s k e t c h of t h e ways i n which t h i s v i s i o n i s pro l o n g e d i n R e s t i f ' s l a t e r n o v e l s . TABLE OF CONTENTS Page INTRODUCTION Who was Res t i f de l a Bretonne, Novelist? 1 CHAPTER I The Triumph of Virtue 13 CHAPTER II Le Pays an perverti 94 CONCLUSION 161 BIBLIOGRAPHY 182 INTRODUCTION WHO WAS RESTIF DE LA BRETONNE, NOVELIST? In his characterization of Res t i f de l a Bretonne, Pierre- Henri Simon e f f e c t i v e l y summarizes the dilemma of the c r i t i c faced with the task of defining him as a novelist: "L'homme n 1 e t a i t certes pas sot, mais son i n t e l l i g e n c e , fureteuse et mobile comme son regard, se depense en idees sans suite et en pressentiments avortes; e l l e s'eparpille sans construire, et bien f i n qui en determinera l a pente."" 1 " The fact that R e s t i f s contribution to eighteenth-century f i c t i o n i s so diffuse i n theme and styl e as to defy coherent description i s attested by the variety of treatment he has received at the hands of his c r i t i c s . He finds a place i n Pierre Trahard's Les Maitres de e 2 l a s e n s i b i l i t e francaise au XVIII s i e c l e . as well as i n Andre e \ 3 Lichtenberger 1 s Le Socialisme au XVIII C  s i e c l e \ J  he i s i d e n t i f i e d by Charles Monselet as a precursor of Balzac^" and by Brunetiere as the "aventurier du naturalisme." R e s t i f s novels have served as documents for study of r u r a l and Parisian l i f e i n the ^""Restif de l a Bretonne: un moraliste ambigu," Journal de Geneve, (30-31 Janvier, 1965), Supplement L i t t e r a i r e , p. 1. 2 P a r i s , 1933, Vol. IV. 5 P a r i s , 1895. ^R_etif de l a Bretonne. sa vie et ses amours, (Paris, 1854). ^"Le Roman experimental," Revue des Deux Mondes (15 f e v r i e r , 1880), p. 937. 2 eighteenth century^ as well as for studies of pathological eroticism, such as that of P.-J.-Louis Gharpentier, R e s t i f de 7 l a Bretonne, sa perversion f e t i c h i s t e . And more recently, Raymond Joly concludes his Deux etudes sur l a prehistoire du realisme. by affirming that R e s t i f cannot be considered a s o c i a l r e a l i s t because his sexual p e c u l i a r i t i e s obstruct "ce minimum d'objectivite dans les vues et de normalite dans les sentiments qu'on est en d r o i t d'attendre de quiconque veut ser v i r de mentor g a ses concitoyens." R e s t i f himself offers yet another view of the interest of his novels. In Les Posthumes he states his purpose i n writing f i c t i o n : "Pour moi, je ne me suis jamais occupe qu'a indiquer a. mes semblables, differentes routes de bonheur, surtout dans l'etat du mariage, qui est l e plus ordinaire, et c e l u i de tous q les hommes." The various routes to happiness wend their way through a f i c t i o n a l t e r r a i n delimited by s o c i a l morality, judging from R e s t i f s d e f i n i t i o n of a good novel: — Qu'est-ce qu'un bon roman? C'est un ouvrage d'imagination, en partie fonde sur l a r e a l i t e , ne ^Charles Porter, " L i f e i n Restif Country," Yale French Studies 40 (1968), pp. 103-117. These medecine (Bordeaux, 1912). Quebec, 1969, p. 168. For detailed accounts of the present state of Restif c r i t i c i s m , see Armand Begue, Etat present des etudes sur R e t i f de l a Bretonne (Paris, 1948); J . Rives Childs, R e s t i f de l a Bretonne. Temoignages et Judgements, Bibliographie (Paris, 1949); Angus Martin, "Restif de l a Bretonne devant l a c r i t i q u e : 1950-1963," Studi Francesi. IX (1965), pp. 278-283. Paris: Veuve Duchesne, 1802, IV, 335. In a l l quotations from R e s t i f , I modernize s p e l l i n g . 3 s o r t a n t jamais de l a c l a s s e des p o s s i b l e s , dans l e q u e l on se propose de t r a c e r 1 ' h i s t o i r e des s e n t i m e n t s et de l a c o n d u i t e d'un heros ou d'une h e r o i n e d'une maniere capable d ' i n s t r u i r e doublement l e l e c t e u r : par ses v e r t u s , par ses s u c c e s , par ses c h u t e s , par ses imprudences, et par ses malheurs. C'est un ouvrage ou. 1'auteur met une morale v i v a n t e , d'autant p l u s i n s t r u c t i v e q u ' e l l e j o i n t l'exemple au precepte.10 I n R e s t i f s o p i n i o n , a l l of h i s n o v e l s a r e good a c c o r d i n g t o t h e s e c r i t e r i a ; they p r o v i d e , w i t h o u t e x c e p t i o n , l i v i n g l e s s o n s i n m o r a l i t y . A g a i n i n Les F r a n c a i s e s , an a d m i r i n g — and r e l i a b l e — c r i t i c recommends the n o v e l s of R e s t i f de l a B r etonne: " L i s e z ses ouvrages; ce sont l e s p l u s u t i l e s en morale q u i a i e n t ete p u b l i e s d e p u i s qu'on e c r i t des romans; j e n'en excepte pas R i c h a r d s o n ; j e n'en excepte aucun m o r a l i s t e . . . " ( I I I , 262) R e s t i f c o n s t a n t l y r e a f f i r m s these moral p r e t e n s i o n s i n h i s p r e f a c e s , h i s c o n c l u s i o n s , and i n the course of h i s n a r r a t i v e s , through the i n t e r m e d i a r y of h i s n a r r a t o r s . R e s t i f i s p r e t t y much a l o n e i n p l a c i n g the c h i e f v a l u e of h i s f i c t i o n i n i t s moral a s p e c t . At w o r s t , h i s moral c l a i m s a t t r a c t a c c u s a t i o n s of h y p o c r i s y , such as those of H e n r i B a c h e l i n , who c h i d e s him i n the f o l l o w i n g terms: " L a i s s e z done v e r t u et morale aux c h a t r e s q u i se v o i l e n t l a f a c e devant une f e u i l l e de v i g n e ! L a i s s e z - l e s a u s s i a T a r t u f f e e t a. son i m p e r i s s a b l e descendance!"'1''1" Moved by s i m i l a r v i e w s , D a n i e l Mornet a c c o r d s ^ L e s F r a n c a i s e s ( N e u f c h a t e l et P a r i s : G u i l l o t , 1786), I I I , 265-266. "^Ed., L'Oeuvre de R e s t i f de l a Bretonne ( P a r i s , 1930), I , x i x . 4 R e s t i f s moralism a grudging degree of recognition only to j u s t i f y placing his works i n the category of feeble imitations of Rousseau, i n which " . . . i l n'y aura done pas l e moindre grain d'esprit, mais des torrents de sentiment qui rouleront tous vers des resignations, des bonheurs, ou des chatiments 12 vertueux. Restif n 1 avait pas d 1 autre philosophie." At the very best., R e s t i f s preoccupation with morality i s considered a puzzling element of contradiction i n his f i c t i o n a l worlds. For Armand Bdgue, R e s t i f s r e a l claim to excellence as a novelist l i e s i n "une v i s i o n dure, presque cynique de 1 1  existence, que Re t i f l a i s s e coexister, contradictoirement, avec un autre monde, 13 aux sentiments faux et aux vertus larmoyantes." And P.-H. Simon sees ambiguity i n the fact that R e s t i f i s "aussi enivre de sensualisme epicurien que d'idealisme moral, aussi porte a. c u l t i v e r l e p l a i s i r qu'a i d o l a t r e r l a vertu. ""'"̂ The fact that moralism i s considered a s u p e r f i c i a l and dispensable aspect of R e s t i f s f i c t i o n i s reflected i n a general c r i t i c a l neglect of the f i r s t eight years of his a c t i v i t y as author. The tendency to propagandize i n favor of bourgeois virtues dominates, the portion of his f i c t i o n that antedates Le Paysan perverti (1775), the novel i n which Restif f i r s t begins to show his talents for portrayal of the less edifying aspects of -1 Q Ed., La Nouvelle Heloise, by Jean-Jacques Rousseau (Paris, 1925, I, 274. 13 Armand Begue, Etat present des etudes sur R e t i f de l a Bretonne (Paris, 1948), p. 126. 14 Loc. c i t . (above, note l ) . l i f e . The r e s u l t i n g thematic contrast has led Servais Etienne, who discusses Restif i n the section of his book devoted to "Le realisme et l a reaction contre l e conte moral", to comment, " . . . c'est perdre l e temps que d'eplucher, comme j ' a i pense 15 l e f a i r e , les romans q u ' i l publia avant 1775 . . ." Even R e s t i f did not have a much higher opinion of his e a r l i e s t novels, although he bases his c r i t i c i s m on his lack of o r i g i n a l i t y i n technique, rather than on an excess of moralism, when he confesses, "Je me t r a i n a i s alors sur les pas de tous les romanciers que j'avais presents; i l l e f a l l a i t , a f i n que je me degoutasse de cette imitation s e r v i l e , de cette t r i v i a l i t y d ' a v e n t u r e s . I n this period, R e s t i f was inspired by a wide variety of writers: Mme Riccoboni, V o l t a i r e , Diderot, Marivaux, and above a l l , Rousseau. Resemblances between Restif's e a r l i e s t works and their models are extremely s u p e r f i c i a l , however, except i n the case of Rousseau. Echoes of Rousseau are frequent i n Restif's novels; but for R e s t i f , they are not a manifestation of the s e r v i l e imitation for which he otherwise reproaches himself. He often recognizes s p e c i f i c a l l y his debt to Rousseau by pointing out that he improves upon and surpasses his i l l u s t r i o u s prede- cessor. Judging from the oblivion into which these novels have f a l l e n however, i t i s clear that R e s t i f may be g u i l t y of exag- gerating t h e i r superiority over the works of Rousseau. The only extensive c r i t i c a l consideration of what we might 15 Servais Etienne, Le Genre romanesque en France depuis 1'apparition de l a "Nouvelle Heloise" jusqu'aux approches de l a RevolutionTBruxelles. 1922), p. 391. l 6 Monsieur Nicolas (Paris: Pauvert, 1959), VI, 470. 6 c a l l R e s t i f s apprenticeship novels i s offered by Charles Porter i n his exhaustive study of the genesistfRestifs f i c t i o n , R e s t i f ' s 17 Novels, or An Autobiography i n Search of an Author. Porter does l i t t l e , however, to establish the relevance of what he c a l l s the "imitative and didactic" works to the world view he sees Restif beginning to develop only i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . He b a s i c a l l y agrees with R e s t i f that i n writing these novels he was casting about for his true id e n t i t y as n o v e l i s t , an ide n t i t y which he did not discover u n t i l he abandoned imitation of popular writers i n favor of the a r t i s t i c transposition of his own experiences and desires that characterizes Le Paysan perverti and the major portion of his l a t e r novels. It i s upon the auto- biographical and near-autobiographical novels that Porter bases his ultimate d e f i n i t i o n of R e s t i f , novelist: "Restif de l a Bretonne, naked before the m i l l i o n b i t s of mirror r e f l e c t i n g a world f u l l of distorted himselves — there, i n his own words, i s the best image of his novels, before which we too admit standing i n astonishment." (p. 416) We question, however, whether a picture of what R e s t i f s f i c t i o n represented for i t s author, based on only the autobio- graphical novels, r e a l l y constitutes the truest image of his a r t . The present study of R e s t i f s f i c t i o n a l worlds represents an ef f o r t to r e s i s t the influence of the orthodox c r i t i c a l approach which seeks the r e a l R e s t i f , n o v e l i s t , only i n the revelations concerning his own personality or i n the attention to material 17 New Haven and London, 1967. 7 r e a l i t i e s of existence offered by his l a t e r f i c t i o n . Our r e s i s - tance i s based on the conviction that Restif"s novels offer a coherent world view of which both moralistic and r e a l i s t i c repre- sentations of human motivations are inte g r a l parts, and to which both the autobiographical and the non-autobiographical novels contribute. In other words, we are persuaded that close examin- ation of the opposing aspects of R e s t i f s f i c t i o n a l worlds allows the attentive reader to find a basic underlying unity and a coherent conception of Restif as implied author. We designate the implied author as our pr i n c i p l e concern, agreeing as we do with Wayne Booth's point that such concern best compels attention to the "core of norms and choices" i n the work as a whole: Our sense of the implied author includes . . . the i n t u i t i v e apprehension of a completed a r t i s t i c whole; the chief value to which this implied author i s committed, regardless of what party his creator belongs to i n r e a l l i f e . . . The "implied author" chooses, consciously or unconsciously, what we read; we i n f e r him as an i d e a l , l i t e r a r y , created version of the r e a l man; he i s the sum of his own choices.1^ We are not so ambitious, however, as to attempt to define Restif as he i s implied by a l l twenty-five of his novels. We propose, rather, to lay the f i r s t foundations of a d e f i n i t i o n of his contribution to f i c t i o n that i s comprehensive enough to include the extremes of sentimental moralism and crude realism. We work toward this objective by studying the relationship between the world views of the much-neglected early non-autobiographical novels and the f i r s t of the autobiographical novels, Le Paysan The Rhetoric of F i c t i o n (Chicago and London, 1961), pp. 73-75. 8 p e r v e r t i . In order to i d e n t i f y the "core of norms and choices" that relates Restif's e a r l i e s t novels to Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , we have adopted the method of the c r i t i c as explicator, who, i n the words of Peter Nurse, "begins by formulating an i n i t i a l impres- sion d'ensemble, the v a l i d i t y of which i s subsequently put to the test i n an analysis of individual d e t a i l s of form and content." Our impression d'ensemble i s that the non-autobiographical novels and Le Paysan perverti are i n fact closely bound together by the moral preoccupations of the author. The theme of the relevance of s o c i a l morality to individual happiness, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n matters of love, i s central to a l l of these novels. The main characters are consistently involved i n the problem of surmounting the obstacle of their own passions, and sometimes those of others, i n order to att a i n happiness i n s o c i a l l y approved love r e l a t i o n - ships. The author's break with t r a d i t i o n i n favor of personal experience as a source of i n s p i r a t i o n for his narrative results i n changes i n f i c t i o n a l structure that modify, but do not displace, this central theme. The structures a r i s i n g from each source of i n s p i r a t i o n explore from different points of view problems involved i n reconciling human nature and morality. The conclusions imposed by such different points of view are not, moreover, as contradictory as might be supposed. It i s our conviction that a l l of the novels present, more or less d i r e c t l y , a pessimistic v i s i o n of the p o s s i b i l i t i e s of a l l y i n g human nature and s o c i a l morality i n the interest of happiness. 1 9 The Art of C r i t i c i s m (Edinburgh, 1969), p. 3. 9 We say that this v i s i o n i s presented more or less d i r e c t l y , "because i t i s i m p l i c i t i n the non-autobiographical novels, and e x p l i c i t i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . Validation of our impression d'ensemble therefore involves a double a n a l y t i c a l task. F i r s t , we mus* show how the pre- Paysan novels, which we group together i n a f i r s t chapter ent i t l e d The Triumph of Virtue (because the characters are uniformly successful i n attaining moral happiness), i n fact go beyond simple i l l u s t r a t i o n of the efficacy of virtue toward a more complex v i s i o n of human nature and morality. Secondly, we are required to show that the v i s i o n of morality i m p l i c i t i n these novels i s developed more d i r e c t l y i n Le Paysan perverti; that the moral theme i s i n fact an essential part of the f i c t i o n a l f a b r i c of a novel that invited the following accusation of immorality i n the Correspondance l i t t e r a i r e of November, 1775: Quelque moral que puisse etre l'objet de 1'auteur, i l est a craindre que l ' e f f e t de son l i v r e ne l e soi t guere. Je connais meme peu d'ouvrages dont l a lecture me paraisse plus dangereuse pour l a jeunesse; l e vice y joue l e rdle qui attache l e plus, i l n'est combattu que par des idees et par des evenements romanesques, et l e peu de philoso- phie que 1'auteur s'est efforce d'y repandre se trouve entierement etouffe par les tableaux l e s plus propres a. enflammer les sens et 1' imagination. 20 We r e l y on the f i c t i o n a l structures to reveal the role of morality i n these novels. Our acceptance of Restif's own comments regarding his art does not mean, therefore, that our findings concerning the unifying theme i n his f i c t i o n are guided by his Grimm et a l . , Correspondance l i t t e r a i r e , philosophique et c r i t i q u e (Paris: Gamier, 1879), X I , 160. 10 statements of intent. On the contrary, i n our analysis of R e s t i f s novels, we deal with technique i n the second sense defined by Mark Schorer: "Technique i n f i c t i o n . . . we somehow continue to regard as merely a means to organizing material which i s 'given' rather than as a means of exploring and defining the values i n an area of experience which, for the f i r s t time then, 21 are being given." In approaching technique as exploration rather than as i l l u s t r a t i o n of an a p r i o r i idea, we expect to fin d that Restif's novels do provide instruction i n matters of morality and happiness; but we may not i n fact always be led to agree with the judgments offered by his narrators concerning the precise sense of that instruction i n s p e c i f i c novels. Plot structures, or patterns of cause and e f f e c t , and narrative point of view are the aspects of technique that we see as most i n f l u e n t i a l i n shaping the moral theme i n these novels. In stating that the action of the novels consists, i n i t s broad outlines, of surmounting the obstacle of passion i n order to a t t a i n happiness i n s o c i a l conformity, we have already begun to i d e n t i f y the nature of Restif's p l o t s . When the charac- ters are involved i n r e s i s t i n g the influence of their own passions, they are the heroes of sentimental p l o t s , for which Paul Goodman supplies the following generic d e f i n i t i o n : Novels of the sentimental kind are sequences of occasions for sentiment, leading to abiding a t t i - tudes or active commitments. Unlike serious poems, the actions of the persons do not ess e n t i a l l y engage them; that i s , formally, the persons have "Technique as Discovery," Approaches to the Novel, ed. Robert Scholes (San Francisco, 1966), p. 142. 11 a scope and career greater than these particular actions; the persons respond to the events rather than being personally i n them. And yet, unlike comedies of d e f l a t i o n , these actions and other occasions of response do make a difference; the responses add up; disposition i s fixed into charac- t e r . In analyzing the structure of a sentimental sequence, therefore, we must look for two things. F i r s t , the p r i n c i p l e of the adding up, to the f i x i n g of character, including the predispositions of the persons to such a career. But, second . . . we must explain the retardation, why i t i s that the persons are not more seriously committed to the actions, for this also i s something positive and dynamic . . . 2 2 The moral implications of the plots i n R e s t i f that trace the development of the individual's s o c i a l identity w i l l be brought out by analysis of precisely those elements of sentimental plots that Goodman considers s i g n i f i c a n t : the p r i n c i p l e of adding up to the f i x i n g of character, and the p r i n c i p l e of r e t a r - dation. I d e n t i f i c a t i o n of the causes of the characters' ultimate commitment to v i r t u e , as well as analysis of the role played by passion i n hindering that commitment, w i l l y i e l d up a consistent v i s i o n of the ambiguous relationship between the individual's nature, s o c i a l morality, and happiness. In the course of our analysis, we w i l l note how variations i n the degree of e x p l i c i t - ness of this v i s i o n are created by variations i n the r e l a t i v e importance accorded the positive and negative aspects of the sentimental p l o t . The narratives may focus on either the causes of the characters' success i n attaining moral happiness, or on the obstructive role of t h e i r passions. The Structure of Literature (Chicago and London, 1962), p. 127. 12 We w i l l , furthermore, have occasion to analyse the i n t e r - vention and defeat of passion i n a different context, that of the adventure p l o t . In this type of p l o t , again according to Goodman, attention i s centered "on the acts, with l i t t l e atten- t i o n to the f i x i n g of character: where the persons are merely plausible agents, we have simple adventure stories . . . " (p. 129) In the adventure p l o t s , R e s t i f s characters are involved i n r e s i s t i n g the interference of other people's passions with th e i r own projects for moral happiness. Here again, the manner of interference and the way i t i s eliminated contribute to shaping the moral theme. These then are the guidelines we intend to follow i n our attempt to extract a new d e f i n i t i o n of R e s t i f , n o v e l i s t , from a representative segment of his f i c t i o n . CHAPTER I THE TRIUMPH OP VIRTUE The heroes of the novels R e s t i f published between 1767 and 1775 enjoy the p r i v i l e g e of inhabiting a world i n which the c o n f l i c t between human nature and s o c i a l morality i s easily resolved, almost to the point of being negated. A b r i e f period of experience with extra-virtuous manifestations of passion su f f i c e s to convince the majority of these characters that conformity to s o c i a l values, i n marriage to other virtuous characters, f u l l y s a t i s f i e s the requirements of their natures, and hence procures happiness. Thus i t would seem that on one l e v e l , that of story, or sequence of events, these novels imply R e s t i f as the sort of moralist who equates nature, virtue, and happiness. But we s h a l l see that there i s , i n fact, a more l u c i d moralist behind these s t o r i e s . As we examine the ways i n which the variations i n sentimental and adventure plots bring about these apparently optimistic denouements, we s h a l l discover evidence that the moral solution to the problem of happiness i s not as comprehensive as i t appears. There i s more s a c r i f i c e of human nature involved than meets the eyes of the characters who find their happiness i n v i r t u e . Restif's f i r s t novel, LaFaMlle vertueuse, published i n 1767,' "*"See Charles Porter, R e s t i f s Novels (New Haven and London, 1967), for d e t a i l s concerning genesis and circumstances of publi- cation of R e s t i f s novels. Such background i s interesting, for i t reveals R e s t i f s curious methods of working. We do not include th i s material ourselves because i t would constitute a r e p e t i t i o n of Porter, and would interrupt the continuity of the structure we have attempted to give to our study. 14 i l l u s t r a t e s the triumph of virtue i n a sentimental plot comple- mented by an adventure p l o t . These two plots establish the basic values and functioning of a world governed by virtue that w i l l be enlarged upon i n subsequent novels. In this novel, the objective of the action i s the marriage of the two main characters, S i r Blaker and Leonor, who are cousins. The objective i s established by the parents of S i r Blaker and Leonor at the outset of the narrative. Two obstacles must be overcome before this plan can be r e a l i z e d , however. The f i r s t obstacle i s dealt with i n the sentimental p l o t , which, as we have said, traces the adjustment of the hero's own personality to s o c i a l values. It i s the personality of S i r Blaker that f i r s t causes problems. Leonor i s a model of v i r t u e , but S i r Blaker i s not worthy of her. He i s regrettably "leger", a b i t too " b r i l l a n t " , p and manifests too much misplaced "finesse". He thus does not l i v e up to the i d e a l of masculine virtue expressed by Leonor's father: La facon de f a i r e l a cour a notre aimable jeunesse, n'est pas de leur rendre de ces soins f r i v o l e s que l a l e g l r e t e ordinaire des femmes leur f a i t trouver charmants. La droiture du coeur, l a s o l i d i t e de 1'esprit, l a douceur du caractere, furent toujours, pour [nos femmes] , ce que sont les talents c o l i f i c h e t s pour les autres. ( I I , 26) S i r Blaker tends not only to be a b i t too worldly i n his manners, he i s also too inclined to appreciate the charms of women other than Leonor. These fa u l t s do not indicate, however, that S i r La Famille vertuesse (Paris: Veuve Duchesne, 1767), IV, 11. 15 Blaker i s b a s i c a l l y a wicked person. As Leonor's father iden- t i f i e s the source of S i r Blaker's f a u l t s , " . . . je redoute de mauvaises connaissances, des amis corrompus; surtout je crains qu'on ne l u i inspire du gout pour l e jeu." ( I I , 167-68) Those hoping for the marriage of S i r Blaker and Leonor thus compete with malevolent outside influences to form S i r Blaker's character. The success of this moral education depends ent i r e l y on his family, as Leonor's father implies when he says to S i r Blaker's mother, " . . . i l y a bien a t r a v a i l l e r encore, auparavant d'amener votre f i l s ou point ou je_ l e souhaite, pour f a i r e son bonheur et c e l u i de Leonor, en les unissant." ( I I , p. 136. 0uremphasis) Making the couple happy involves not only making S i r Blaker virtuous, but making him love Leonor. This i s of course a necessary condition i f marriage with Leonor i s to constitute happiness for S i r Blaker; i f he i s to fi n d happiness i n v i r t u e . We need have no fears on this point, however, for Leonor's father i s convinced that S i r Blaker i s simply unaware of his profound love for Leonor: " . . . s i r Blaker adore ma f i l l e ; j'en suis sur . . . " ( I I , 167) Thus S i r Blaker need only be awakened to his true nature, which i s temporarily obscured by bad influences, i n order to fin d happiness i n virtuous love. We have no choice but to believe t h i s , for S i r Blaker's r e c a l c i t r a n t personality, and the corrup- tive influences that encourage this r e c a l citrance, have no r e a l i t y i n the narrative. The epistolary form of the novel i s responsible for t h i s . The narrative i s composed entirely of correspondence 16 among characters whose virtue i s beyond reproach. No one ever gets any l e t t e r s from S i r Blaker, so what we know about him i s e n t i r e l y hearsay, and extremely vague. S i r Blaker i s thus con- fined to a completely passive role i n the novel. His dependency on his family for his existence i n the narrative underlines his dependency on i t for his virtue and his happiness. The narrative focus on the positive aspect of virtue and i t s relationship to happiness, rather than on resistance to these values, prevents our knowing and possibly sympathizing with S i r Blaker. In compensation, the positive focus permits intimate acquaintance and i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with Leonor. Though she has no more influence on the outcome of the c o n f l i c t than S i r Blaker, her l e t t e r s form a large part of the narrative, for she i s a model of v i r t u e . The most important indication of Leonor's virtue i s the fact that she loves S i r Blaker, unworthy as he i s . Her love for him i s virtuous, for i t i s not a function of blind passion. As she confesses her feelings to her father, "Je vous l'avoue, 6 mon pereI je l'aime tendrement; je l'aimai des l e premier instant que je l e v i s . II e t a i t votre choix; i l aura toujours des droits sur mon coeur . . . " (IV, 11) In this expression of her sentiments, Leonor offers an important insight into the conception of virtuous love i n Restif's early novels. Leonor's love i s a function of obedience, i n the form of transfer of f i l i a l love to the person chosen by her parents. In other novels, virtuous love may take s l i g h t l y d i f f e r e n t forms, but i t w i l l always be; assimilated to non- 17 passional affections such as f i l i a l love, paternal love, or friendship. It w i l l become evident, furthermore, that as a solution to the problem of individual happiness i n society, t h i s kind of love has both advantages and disadvantages, some of which are foreshadowed by Leonor when she reveals her reaction to S i r Blaker's i n f i d e l i t i e s . Leonor has developed a strong a f f e c t i o n for her future mother-in-law (her cousin), and i t i s this a f f e c t i o n that explains her sadness at the idea of l o s i n g S i r Blaker. As she explains to her best f r i e n d , Rose, J 1 examine mon coeur; i l me semble que ma cousine m'est plus chere que son f i l s . L'amour ne s e r a i t - i l f a i t que pour y occuper l a seconde place, dans ce coeur? Je ne pourrais me v o i r , sans mourir, indifferente a. Madame Blaker, a, t o i , ma tendre Rose; je m'imagine que je supporterais mieux l ' o u b l i de mon amant Je ne sais trop s i ces sentiments sont legitimes, s ' i l s sont dans l a nature; mais i l s sont dans mon coeur . . . On est moins expose aux dangers de l'amour, quand un sentiment plus doux, plus t r a n q u i l l e , remplit deja. notre ame. ( I l l , 118-119) Leonor's friendship for Rose i s another of the gentle sen- timents that protects her against the ravages of passion, and here again, she wonders i f this i s e n t i r e l y natural. As she expresses her reaction to a surprise v i s i t from Rose, . . . on entre.... c'est ma tendre Rose qui se precipite dans mes bras! Dans cet heureux moment, toutes les delices de l'amitie ont inonde mon coeur et r a v i mon ame.... Oui, ma charmante amie, je me l'avoue, mon attachement serait coupable s i 1'on pouvait trop aimer 1'image l a plus parfaite de l a d i v i n i t e . ( I l l , 262-63) This kind of revelatory chattiness i s t y p i c a l of R e s t i f s virtuous characters, and constitutes one of the ways i n which the pre-Payan novels go beyond simple i l l u s t r a t i o n of the 18 efficacy of v i r t u e . The positive focus of the sentimental plot successfully disarms some of the antagonists of the world of vi r t u e ; hut this same focus also permits a loquacity on the part of the virtuous characters that does not always further the cause of v i r t u e . In this p a r t i c u l a r case, the d e f i n i t i o n of virtuous love i s attacked from within. Leonor implies that the assimilation of passion to more c i v i l i z e d sentiments such as f i l i a l a f f e c t i o n and friendship, i n spite of i t s obvious advan- tages for the t r a n q u i l i t y of the individual and society, may i n fact have peculiar consequences. I f the assimilation i s too thorough, i t might ultimately discourage the kind of love neces- sary to the propagation of the species; but i t i s even more l i k e l y to lead to homosexuality and incest. Restif w i l l l a t e r deal d i r e c t l y with the very p o s s i b i l i t i e s inherent i n Leonor's refu s a l to accept the difference between masculine-feminine love and other forms of love. It w i l l become evident that although nature may be suppressed i n one area, i t has an inconvenient tendency to pop out i n others. In La Famille xertueuse, however, Leonor's f a i l u r e to be motivated by an i r r e s i s t i b l e passion for S i r Blaker i s hardly a cause for concern. Her submission to her father's w i l l , as a function of her af f e c t i o n for him and for her future mother- in-law, seconds their objectives as e f f e c t i v e l y as would passion, and indicates a becoming innocence. In keeping with her submissive attitude, Leonor does not participate d i r e c t l y i n solving S i r Blaker's identity problems. She contents herself with c u l t i v a t i n g q u a l i t i e s that w i l l 19 encourage S i r Blaker to see i n her a perfect wife. She suc- ceeds i n surrounding herself with a peaceful atmosphere of virtue that does temporarily captivate the somewhat jaded S i r Blaker. This i n i t s e l f i s considered an indication that S i r Blaker i s b a s i c a l l y virtuous. As Leonor's father says, "Les agrements que procure notre societe sont de nature a. n'etre goutes que par une ame qui commence deja a aimer l a vertu." ( I I , 14) S i r Blaker's appreciation of Leonor's society i n d i - cates that he i s receptive to the esthetic appeal of vi r t u e ; he i s sensible. This i s a point to keep i n mind, for R e s t i f s sentimental plots w i l l develop the notion that s e n s i b i l i t y i s the basis of the r e c o n c i l i a t i o n of human nature and s o c i a l v i r t u e . The delights of Leonor's society that appeal to S i r Blaker r e c a l l , on a modest scale, the order, peace, and innocence 4;hat 3 Saint-Preux admires i n Clarens. In Leonor's company, "on ne joue point, on n'est point o i s i f ; on s'occupe toujours a quel- quechose d'honnete et d ' u t i l e ; un exercice modere, et l a joie d'avoir bien passe l a journee, est 1'assaisonnement d'un souper que l'appetit rend delicieux." ( I I , 14) Unlike Saint-Preux, however, S i r Blaker does not see a permanent source of happiness i n the harmony and s i m p l i c i t y of such a society. He continues to cause anxiety i n his parents and Leonor, and before this problem can be solved, the adventure plot intervenes to further complicate the s i t u a t i o n . The adventure p l o t , as we have said, deals with obstacles Jean^Jacques Rousseau, J u l i e , ou La Nouvelle Heloise (Paris: Garnier, I960), 4 e  p a r t i e , Lettre X. 20 to the hero's happiness that arise from the passions of secon- dary characters. It provides much more l i v e l y action than the sentimental p l o t , i n which the c o n f l i c t i s more talked about than i l l u s t r a t e d . The agents of the adventure plot are Cecily Kinkter, S i r Nandan, and S i r Lankton. Cecily and S i r Nandan are i n love with S i r Blaker and Leonor, respectively, and S i r Lankton has designs on Rose, Leonor's best f r i e n d . The passions of these three characters are i l l e g i t i m a t e because they do not f i t into the parental plan, and are not expressed as tender^ respectful love. The brutal nature of their sentiments i s made manifest when they kidnap S i r Blaker, Leonor, and Rose, with the intention of compromising the two women and forcing S i r Blaker to marry C e c i l y . This v i l l a i n o u s plot i s of course thwarted. Leonor's virtue i s saved at the beginning of the episode when she jumps out of the getaway carriage into the arms of her father, who happens by at the right moment. Rose and S i r Blaker are l e f t to deal with their agressors, whom they succeed i n intimidating temporarily. "Soit par un effet de l a protection du c i e l , s o i t par l a superiority qu'a naturellement l a vertu sur l e crime, i l s furent effrayes de notre resolution, i l s se retirerent . . . ", explains Rose l a t e r . ( I l l , 47-48) The reasons for the temporary triumph of Rose and S i r Blaker are indeed myster- ious, and we suspect i t i s the effect of p l a i n good luck. Their debt to mere chance w i l l i n fact be considerable by the end of the episode. The si t u a t i o n becomes much more d i f f i c u l t for Rose and S i r Blaker when their abductors become increasingly i n s i s t e n t . The following scene, narrated by Rose, renders e f f e c t i v e l y the violent atmosphere of the abduction episode, i n contrast to the peaceful atmosphere of the sentimental p l o t . Cecily and S i r Lankton have been mistreating Rose i n a darkened room: "Ce malheureux assouvissait sa b r u t a l i t e . . . I l s n'etaient pas encore contents; i l s voulurent jouir de l a honte de c e l l e qu'ils venaient de deshonorer." ( I l l , 68) Cecily c a l l s for l i g h t , and discovers that t h e i r actual victim i s a servant g i r l d i s - guised as Rose. "Cecily poussa un c r i de fureur. Puis s'elancant sur e l l e , comme une forcenee, e l l e l u i plongea plusieurs f o i s son poignard dans l e sein." ( I l l , 69) Cecily's plans for S i r Blaker are announced i n terms only s l i g h t l y less vigorous. It has been decided that " s i r Blaker donnerait l a main a miss Kinkter, ou s e r a i t abandonne a. toute sa fureur. E l l e ne l u i promettait pas moins que l a mort. II l u i declara q u ' i l preferait l e trepas a l'horreur d'etre son epoux. Cecily ne se posseda plus, e l l e l'accabla d'injures . . . " ( I l l , 70-71) Unable to r e s i s t this kind of abuse much longer, Rose and S i r Blaker are rescued i n time by the fortuitous a r r i v a l of the fathers of Cecily and S i r Lankton, who are opposed to the projects of their offspring. Cecily escapes her father's wrath, but the other two v i l l a i n s are punished i n due form. External interference with Leonor's and S i r Blaker's happiness i s thus removed, and the two lovers can be reunited. The problem of S i r Blaker's personality remains, however. 22 It i s eventually resolved very u n s a t i s f a c t o r i l y , i n a reversal that has no connection with either the sentimental action or the adventure action, which t h e o r e t i c a l l y have been preparing the denouement. The effort s of S i r Blaker's parents to awaken him to his true nature do not suddenly "take" as a result of the abduction episode, as might reasonably be expected. S i r Blaker i s neither brought to his senses by the threat of Leonor's seduction, nor by his disgust with the world of violent passions. It i s i n fact Cecily who provides the l i n k between the two p l o t s , but as a reformed character. She returns to the scene following a period of self-imposed seclusion and repen- tance, and her reform i s accepted i n good f a i t h by Leonor's society (whose indulgence i s made s l i g h t l y more credible by the fact that the g i r l Cecily stabbed has survived). Cecily's energetic intervention, this time benevolent-, arranges a happy ending to the sentimental p l o t . In a conversation that takes place beyond the range of the narrative, she makes S i r Blaker believe he i s i n danger of los i n g Leonor permanently, and this f i n a l l y dissipates "l'espece d'enchantement qui rend s i r Blaker contraire a. lui-meme." (IV, 61) S i r Blaker becomes aware at l a s t that he tr u l y loves Leonor, and the other virtues r e q u i - s i t e to happiness follow of themselves. Cecily also clears up any doubts we may have had concerning Leonor's attitude toward S i r Blaker. After her marriage to S i r Blaker, Leonor warms up considerably, according to Cecily: "Je n'eusse jamais cru l e coeur de Leonor s i tendre. 0 mon amie! moi qui l u i d i s a i s un jour qu'elle ne connaissait pas toute l a violence des desirs d'un coeur maitrise par 1'amour, toute l a force de cette passion imperieuse, comme je me trompais'" (IV, 274) The novel ends with happy marriages for a l l . A small, closed society, closely knit by marriage, blood t i e s , and common moral values i s the r e s u l t . As we s h a l l see, this method of tying up the destinies of his characters i s t y p i c a l of R e s t i f . The family i s always the context i n which virtue and happiness f l o u r i s h . The patriarch, Leonor's father, gets a l l the credit for the happy conclusion of La Famille vertueuse: La vertu, plus que d'immenses richesses et les honneurs qui suivent une naissance i l l u s t r e , distingua sa posterite. On ne l a nomme plus a Londres que the virtuous family, ( l a famille vertueuse). Tant les bons exemples d'un pere ont de force sur ses enfantsl (IV, 298-299) The story i s thus extremely edifying, for the outcome f a i t h f u l l y i l l u s t r a t e s the precepts set forth i n the preface. By following Duty, the characters have indeed found "le p l a i s i r sans remords, l a joie delicieuse et pure, l'aimable t r a n q u i l l i t e , des amours constants, et l'amitie f i d e l e . . . " (p. x i v ) . We may permit ourselves, however, to draw more l i t e r a r y conclusions as well.. It i s evident from the plot structures that the example of moral values alone i s not responsible for the triumph of "the virtuous family". The sentimental plot develops the positive aspect of the novel. It defines virtue and l i n k s i t to happiness with l i t t l e reference to virtue's antagonist, passion. The predominant role of virtue i n the narrative does not succeed, however, i n 24 establishing virtue as an absolute force i n determining happiness. The reasons for this become evident when we review S i r Blaker's progress toward virtue and happiness i n terms of Goodman's d e f i n i t i o n of the sentimental p l o t . As we define Restif's handling of thi s plot i n La Famille vertueuse, we w i l l be id e n t i f y i n g a stru c t u r a l v a r i a t i o n on the sentimental plot that i s t y p i c a l of Restif's worlds of v i r t u e . The sentimental plot of this novel emphasizes the passivity on the part of the main character implied i n Goodman's statement that i n sentimental p l o t s , "persons respond to events without being personally i n them!' 1  (isee above, p. 11). The role of the hero i n causing the events of the novel i s minimal; the r e a l hero of the narrative i s i n fact society. For this reason, we w i l l c a l l this type of plot the external sentimental p l o t . The focus on the role of society i s established f i r s t by the narrative point of view. The progress of S i r Blaker toward virtue i s narrated by characters representing s o c i a l values. In La Famille vertueuse, these partisans of s o c i a l morality are other characters, due to the epistolary form. In the non- epistolary novels, the voice of the narrator w i l l impose the point of view of society. In the pre-Paysan f i c t i o n , the narrator i s always a s o c i a l conformist. Society remains the hero of this type of sentimental plot on the l e v e l of the action, as well as on the l e v e l of narrative point of view. It i s the agent of the movement toward the triumph of v i r t u e . In La Famille vertueuse. representatives of s o c i a l values establish the objectives of the action and 25 b r i n g about t h e i r r e a l i z a t i o n . The o b j e c t i v e of the a c t i o n i s , t o be s u r e , the h a p p i n e s s of the n ominal hero, S i r B l a k e r ; but i t i s a p r e - e s t a b l i s h e d happiness d e f i n e d i n terms of s o c i a l v a l u e s . Happiness f o r S i r B l a k e r i s , i n c o n c r e t e terms, m a r r i - age w i t h an i n c a r n a t i o n o f v i r t u e , who i s chosen by h i s f a m i l y . I t i s easy t o see how t h i s k i n d of happiness b e n e f i t s s o c i e t y ; i t i m p l i e s c o n f o r m i t y of the i n d i v i d u a l t o s o c i a l v a l u e s and ensures p r o p a g a t i o n of t h e s e v a l u e s . The problem, of c o u r s e , i s t o make the i n d i v i d u a l r e a l i z e t h a t t h i s c o n c e p t i o n of hap- p i n e s s i s good f o r him as w e l l , and t h i s i s the source of the a c t i o n i n the e x t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l p l o t . I n k e e p i n g w i t h the f o c u s on s o c i a l c o n t e x t r a t h e r than on the i n d i v i d u a l , t h e n e c e s s a r y c o i n c i d e n c e of s o c i a l and p e r s o n a l o b j e c t i v e s i s brought about i n L a F a m i l l e v e r t u e u s e by the e f f o r t s of S i r B l a k e r ' s f a m i l y and f r i e n d s . The events t h a t provoke responses i n S i r B l a k e r , the p r i n c i p l e of a d d i n g up t o f i x i n g o f c h a r a c t e r , ..are not haphazard c o n t i n g e n c i e s o f l i f e , but r a t h e r c o n d i t i o n s arranged by o t h e r c h a r a c t e r s . I n R e s t i f 1 s e x t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l p l o t s , i t i s a g a i n t y p i c a l l y the s o c i a l c o n t e x t t h a t c o n s c i o u s l y p r o v i d e s the o c c a s i o n s f o r s entiment t h a t l e a d t o the a c t i v e commitment of the main c h a r a c t e r t o a s o c i a l l y d e f i n e d h a p p i n e s s . E x a c t l y how t h e s e o c c a s i o n s f o r sentiment p r o v i d e d by the f a m i l y c o n t e x t become the p r i n c i p l e of a d d i n g up t o the f i x i n g o f c h a r a c t e r i n v i r t u e remains vague i n La F a m i l l e v e r t u e u s e . S i r B l a k e r becomes aware of h i s l o v e f o r Leonor, hence of h i s 26 love for v i r t u e , i n a mysterious fashion. A private interview with Cecily magically sweeps away the obstacles that have pre- occupied the characters throughout some 1000 pages of narrative. Subsequent novels develop more f u l l y the f i x i n g of character, but s t i l l with more focus on result than on the psychological processes that make this result possible. Ultimately the early novels make consent to virtuous love as a source of happiness appear to be a sort of conditioned r e f l e x . In La Famille vertueuse we do have, however, an indication of some of the bases of this conditioning, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the predisposition of persons to a career of v i r t u e . As Goodman suggests, the predisposition of the character to respond to the p r i n c i p l e of adding up i s an important aspect of sentimental sequences. Predisposition i s of particular importance to Restif's sentimental p l o t s , for i t establishes the very founda- tions of a world governed by v i r t u e . As we have seen, S i r Blaker's moral education involves bringing him to awareness and expression of his "true" nature; s p e c i f i c a l l y , to expression of his natural s e n s i b i l i t e . This i s his predisposition to a career of v i r t u e , and i t i s primarily indicated i n his re c e p t i v i t y to the order and calm of Leonor's society. In this S i r Blaker gets a precedent for the early novels, i n which moral education i s sentimental education; i t i s a f i x i n g of character i n a very r e a l sense. Moral education does not encourage simply external expressions of v i r t u e , i t i n s t i l s a virtuous essence i n the i n d i v i d u a l . Nature's g i f t of s e n s i b i l i t y i s fixed i n sentiment, or an emotional preference 27 for the s p e c i f i c attributes of v i r t u e , such as tenderness, respect, order, and harmony. As a r e s u l t , the individual auto- matically demands the satisfactions of tender respectful love that society o f f e r s . This i s i n fact a description of Leonor, who represents the prototype of the education process i n La Famille vertueuse. As Goodman points out, however, another important' point to consider i n analyzing a sentimental sequence i s the p r i n c i p l e of retardation i n the f i x i n g of character. In Restif's novels, the hindrance i s that which opposes the f i x i n g of human nature i n sentiment; hence i t opposes virtue as a source of happiness. As we have seen, however, this opposition i s merely hinted at i n the sentimental plot of La Famille vertueuse. The hindrance i s not positive and dynamic, for the narrative i s weighted i n favor of v i r t u e . A glimpse of this hindrance i s nevertheless offered i n Leonor's sublimation of her passions, and may be further c l a r i f i e d by Cecily's r e f l e c t i o n s on the origins of her misfortunes: " [ S i r Lankton} a detruit dans mon coeur des prejuges, i l est v r a i , mais qui m'auraient f a i t vivre dans l'innocence: i l a developpe l e germe de passions fougueuses qui m'ont entrainee malgre moi." ( I l l , 91) It would seem that s e n s i b i l i t y predisposes to passion as well as to tender, respect- f u l love, and that this i s the r e a l reason why moral education must take the form of sentimental education. Curiously enough, Cecily c a l l s the principles learned through sentimental education prejuges, thus suggesting that sentimental education i s a r t i f i - c i a l , less s o l i d l y based on nature than we have been led to 28 believe. Subsequent novels w i l l develop these implications, as well as enlarge upon the methods by which s e n s i b i l i t y i s fixed i n sentimentality. La Famille vertueuse already provides, however, enough elements to permit formulating some conclusions concerning the significance of the external sentimental plot for the theme of morality and happiness. In spite of the fact that the external sentimental plot constructs a world where virtuous love causes happiness because i t s a t i s f i e s human nature, i t would seem that such a world functions according to a narrow d e f i n i t i o n of nature. The narrative point of view implies this by denying a dynamic role to S i r Blaker's r e c a l c i t r a n t nature, thus committing a s i n of ommission that i s almost as eloquent as outright contradiction. We have the d i s t i n c t impression that something about nature i s being ignored, and this impression i s supported by the comments of Leonor and C e c i l y , which indicate that passion i s a very r e a l aspect of human nature. This i s why we have said that the sentimental plot i n this novel.inadequately imposes virtue as an absolute force for happiness. It adopts an a r t i f i c i a l point of view that manifestly ignores the r e a l contribution of nature, or of the i n d i v i d u a l , to such a law of cau s a l i t y . This a r t i f i c i a l i t y i s further aggravated by the fact that the reward for virtue i s separate from virtue i t s e l f . S i r Blaker i s hardly obliged to be happy with the esthetic s a t i s - factions offered by order and harmony. He i s rewarded with the more concrete s a t i s f a c t i o n of possessing a lovely incarnation 29 of v i r t u e . Happiness i s , furthermore, not won through the i n i t i a t i v e of the i n d i v i d u a l , i t i s conferred by other charac- t e r s . Thus the external sentimental plot would seem to imply that the l i n k between virtue and natural desires, and the c u l - mination of virtue i n happiness, depend entirely on the arrange- ments of a very limited s o c i a l context. The adventure plot i n La Famille vertueuse imposes similar conclusions. As we have seen, the adventure plot provides the r e a l action of the novel, for S i r Blaker*s personality as hindrance does not give r i s e to much v i s i b l e c o n f l i c t . This has the advantage of keeping the values of the world of virtue i n an apparently absolute position, but does not lend i t s e l f to much active demonstration of the superiority of v i r t u e . The adventure plot compensates for t h i s lack by providing virtue with an occasion to triumph over an active obstacle; "but we must question whether this triumph constitutes r e a l proof of the inherent superiority of v i r t u e . The advantages and d i s - advantages of the adventure plot as a technique of i l l u s t r a t i n g moral c o n f l i c t s comes out i n fact quite strongly i n this novel. The adventure p l o t , to r e c a l l the d e f i n i t i o n we have borrowed from Goodman (see above, p. 12) focuses on acts, rather than on the f i x i n g of character; the characters are merely plausible agents. This i s an accurate characterization of the c o n f l i c t provoked by the interference of Cecily and her accomplices i n La Famille vertueuse. The obstacle they oppose to the progress of virtue originates outside of the main characters, and does not influence S i r Blaker's commitment to 30 v i r t u e . This relegation of passion to an external, material c o n f l i c t has the advantages of presenting the negative side of the issue of morality and happiness which i s so obviously lacking i n the sentimental plot; and i t i s presented i n a way that j u s t i f i e s the omission of passion from the d e f i n i t i o n of human nature as sentiment. The adventure plot concretizes passion as a violent agent for destruction that seriously threatens the happiness i n store for S i r Blaker and Leonor. In a word, the adventure plot defines passion as v i c e , which i s presented "sous l e jour odieux qui l u i convient," as the preface has promised (p. x x i i i ) . After such a h a i r - r a i s i n g contact with passion i t i s indeed d i f f i c u l t to avoid concluding that what i s bad for society i s also bad for the i n d i v i d u a l , and that one does well to stay at home. Rose i n fact draws this very conclusion from what she c a l l s her "experience"^ with passion: "Je crois . . . (du moins j'en juge par mon experience) que l e malheur donne du ressort a l'ame, rend son gout plus penetrant, et l u i f a i t trouver de l a s a t i s f a c t i o n dans ce que l'uniformite l u i rendait auparavant insip i d e . " ( I l l , 102-103) Limitation of the a c t i v i t y of passion to an adwenture plot thus has the thematic advantage of maintaining a v i v i d contrast between positive and negative moral values and their consequences. Unfortunately, however, the adventure plot has a resolution that ^It i s important to note that knowledge of passion i n the adventure plot i s s u p e r f i c i a l contact, not experience. The main character does not yet discover that his own passions are destructive. 31 does not have much to do with moral values. The source of the c o n f l i c t i s circumstantial, i t remains external to the charac- t e r s , and i t s resolution i s circumstantial as w e l l . We have seen how the characters are rescued from the persecution of other people's passions by Providence — or by authorial s t r i n g - p u l l i n g — i n the shape of virtuous characters who arrive on the scene just i n time to avert disaster. Thus both the external sentimental plot and the adventure plot of La Famille vertueuse reveal the lim i t a t i o n s of the optimistic story by showing that the characters depend on some- thing other than virtuous love alone to acquire happiness. In the external sentimental p l o t , they depend on context to reveal t h e i r true sentimental nature and to crown i t with happiness. The circumstantial resolution of the adventure plot casts further doubt on the efficacy of v i r t u e . Neither of these types of f i c t i o n a l action establishes,therefore, an essential l i n k between virtue and happiness, due to their emphasis on causes unrelated to either nature or morality, such: as luck and family intervention. The only other solution to the problem of incorporating morality i n f i c t i o n a l action would be to con- cret i z e the hindrance and the predispositions to a career of virtue i n the personality of the main character, focusing on the qualita t i v e c o n f l i c t between passion and sentiment that grows out of human nature, and on the direct consequences of this c o n f l i c t for happiness. This p o s s i b i l i t y w i l l be explored i n two of the non-autobiographical novels, but only after further development of the p o s s i b i l i t i e s of the external sentimental 32 and adventure p l o t s . L u c i l e , ou les ffrogres de l a vertu (1768) represents an assimilation of the adventure plot to the external sentimental p l o t . The interference of secondary characters with the triumph of virtuous love i s not as irrelevant to the personality of the main character as i t was i n La Famille vertueuse. In L u c i l e , other people's passions threaten to f i x the heroine's own character i n passion. Virtue-sentiment must thus prove i t s e l f superior to vice-passion i n a much more direct competition than i n La Famille vertueuse. and i t does. As we s h a l l see i n our analysis of the plot structure of L u c i l e , the cause of virtue gains ground on one l e v e l , but loses ground on another, i n this more direct confrontation between moral antagonists. In Lucile the f i r s t problem i s to discover whether the a c t i v i t i e s of characters h o s t i l e to her virtue w i l l provide her with an occasion to find happiness i n virtuous love. Part of the fun i s to learn the identity of Lucile's future husband, for here the union i s not predestined. Lucile's adventures are set i n motion, i n f a c t , by her refusal to accept the marriage arranged by her parents. Her revolt seems j u s t i f i a b l e , for the man her parents have chosen i s a "magot" by the name of Fisiomon, who i s "noir, maigre, p e t i t , mal f a i t , b r u t a l , ivrogne, et se 5 l i v r a i t quelquefois a. l a plus sale debauche." The match i s obviously unsuitable, for Lucile i s the exact opposite: " . . . L u c i l e , ou les Progres de l a vertu (Francfort et L e i p s i g , 1769), p. 4. son age, quatorze ans; sa figu r e , seduisante; son e s p r i t , f l e x i b l e et juste; son coeur, d r o i t , tendre, et f a i b l e . Les soins que l'on p r i t de son education avaient ajoute des talents a toutes ces qualites . . . " (p. 2) This would i n i t s e l f seem s u f f i c i e n t reason to reject Fisiomon, but more important than Fisiomon's repulsiveness i s the fact that Lucile i s i n love with Dangeot, her father's c l e r k . Dangeot has several a t t r a c - tive q u a l i t i e s . Besides being " f a i t au tour", Dangeot "de plus etait i n s t r u i t , tournait joliment l e s vers; p a r l a i t a tort a. travers Philosophie et r e l i g i o n ; d i s a i t du mai des Moines, s'attendrissait jusques aux larmes sur l e sort des religieuses . . . " (p. 6) Lucile and Dangeot run off together to escape the parental authority f a t a l to their love. They l i v e together i n innocence, though according to the narrator, Lu c i l e can no longer be considered virtuous. Since she has l e f t the family f o l d , and has disobeyed her parents, she i s by d e f i n i t i o n half corrupted already: "Non, Lucile n'etait plus vertueuse: et s i sa pudeur n' avaiti \; point encore recu d'atteintes, c'est a. c e l u i qui f i t pour e l l e l e personnage d'amant, qu'en est tout l e merite. Cependant, je conviens que son ame eta i t innocente . . . " (p. 22) Fisiomon i s of course i n a rage, and he eventually discovers the lovers' hiding place. Dangeot i s arrested, but Lucile escapes. She wanders the streets of Paris , entirely without resources, u n t i l she i s taken i n by a woman of apparently generous motives. The dialogue between the two women provides one of the best scenes i n the book. We are able to appreciate 34 the dramatic irony of the following conversation because we know tha.t the two women have met at the Palais Royal, notorious for i t s frequentation by courtesans, and the narrator has qu a l i - f i e d Lucile's interlocutor as a "dangereuse b i e n f a i t r i c e " ; JLucile:) Mais, qui peut done vous interesser au sort d'une infortunee qui, sans vous, n'aurait su que devenir? — LWomanQ On n'est pas turc; on a un coeur .... et puis, vous savez t r a v a i l l e r , sans doute; vous ne serez pas a. charge.... S i vous ne savez pas, on vous montrera. — [Lucile:) Que ne vous devrai-je point!.... On m'avait bien d i t , que, dans cette v i l l e immense, i l se trouvait de bonnes ames, dont les vertus compensaient l e mal qu'y commettent les mediants. — C'est un tresor! s'ecria par d i s t r a c t i o n l'obligeante Courton..•. (p. 15) La Courton i s of course an entremetteu.se, and she wastes no time i n turning the "treasure" she has found i n Lucile to her p r o f i t . Here the methods of vice are much more subtle than i n li§ Famille vertueuse. Once the victim i s separated physically from the protective world of virtue she i s systematically cor- rupted through her s e n s i b i l i t e , which has not yet been firmly fixed i n sentimentality. We may assume that something similar happened to Cecily of La Famille vertueuse, who has suggested that although s e n s i b i l i t y i s a strength i n the world of virtue, i t also makes the individual vulnerable to corruption through the senses. La Courton i s very aware of th i s , as she reveals i n her plan of action: — II faut de l a hardiesse et une certaine force d'esprit, se d i s a i t - e l l e , pour etre capable de ces choses-la: cette jeune f i l l e n'est point sotte, e l l e n'est qu'ignorante; trompons-la; gagnons son coeur; i l est f a c i l e a seduire, mais i l serait impossible de l e contraindre. La Courton raisonnait juste: i l l u i en avait tant passe par les mains, que 1'experience l u i tenait l i e u de philosophie. (pp. 22-23) La Courton thus takes advantage of Lucile's naive c o n f i - dence and affectionate gratitude, which make her see i n La Courton a "seconde mere". She encourages Lucile to forget Dangeot by reporting fa l s e rumors on his conduct, and by c u l t i - vating i n her a penchant for pleasure. This i s mainly accomplished through selected reading, which i s an effective method, judging from the r e s u l t s : "Les sens de Lucile etaient en feu; son imagination p e ' t i l l a i t . Pour tomber, i l ne l u i manquait qu'un amant: c'etait l a ou. l a Courton 1'attendait. " (p. 25) Only a stroke of luck can save Lu c i l e now from becoming a pr o s t i t u t e , a material as well as a moral victim of La Courton's "protection". Lucile's f i r s t c l i e n t , Durichemont, i s luck personified. He i s struck by a coup de foudre upon his f i r s t sight of Lu c i l e ; but since he i s a virtuous young man (his presence i n La Courton's establishment notwithstanding), love inspires respect, and he cannot p r o f i t from Lucile's s i t u a t i o n : "II se disposait a, l'embrasser: i l avait l a main tendue, pour l u i f a i r e de ces caresses l i b r e s , ordinaires dans les lieux ou. i l se trouvait; un je ne sais quoi 1'arr eta: II l u i sem- b l a i t q u ' i l voulait d i r e , m'amie, ma mignonne; i l ne prononca que mademoiselle." (p. 40) Durichemont's intentions are honorable. Motivated by love and the desire to marry L u c i l e , he removes her from La Courton's influence and places her under the protection of his own virtuous tutor. Here Lucile's reintegration into the world of virtue begins. The circumstantial obstacle to her finding happiness i n virtuous love, her abandonment i n the world of corruption, 36 has been removed, and the only obstacle remaining i s constituted by the attitudes she has acquired i n the world of corruption. Like S i r Blaker, she must learn to love virtue before she can find happiness with i t s representative. Lucile's progress toward virtue i s a precise inversion of her downward movement toward v i c e . Her impressionafeilityy i s again the basis for her moral formation, and i t i s manipulated i n exactly the same way as i t was i n the world of corruption. Edifying reading material serves as the antidote to the i n f l u - ence of La Courton's l i t e r a t u r e . F i r s t L ucile develops a taste for comic opera, and becomes precieuse. This i s considered promising, for she has at least been distracted from La Courton's nefarious lessons. Then, under the influence of such works as La Nouvelle Helo'ise, Emile, and La Famille vertueuse, she becomes more serious and more disposed to tendresse. dropping her coquettish ways i n favor of becoming modesty. Her l i t e r a r y appreciations are, i n c i d e n t a l l y , judicious. Though she finds La Famille vertueuse somewhat i n f e r i o r to the other works, she prefers i t anyway. She only half-heartedly approves of Emile, but admires Sophie's "maniere d'aimer". The narrator indicates that we may consider these judgments proof of Lucile's l e v e l - headedness. Lucile's re-education i s successful, to the point that her experience with corruption i s completely erased from her personality: "Toutes les actions de l'aimable f i l l e annon- caient qu'elle e t a i t redevenue comme auparavant l a premiere v i s i t e de Fisiomon, et son malheureux sejour chez une appa- r e i l l e u s e . Quel retour heureuxl II est aussi rare q u ' i l est desirable." (p. 89) She i s now deemed worthy of the impatient Durichemont, whom she has learned to love. There are, however, a couple of circumstantial obstacles that are yet to be removed. On the l e v e l of attitude, she has regained her o r i g i n a l inno- cence; but does th i s correspond to physical innocence? In response to the searching but delicate questions of her tutor, Lucile reveals that she never knew what La Courton expected of her — hence Durichemont was her f i r s t c l i e n t . Doubts concerning Lucile's relationship with Dangeot are cleared up as well when he reappears opportunely to reveal that he i s actually a woman i n disguise, and marries Lucile's brother. The two deserving lovers are thus united, Lucile's parents forgive her for her disobedience, and the v i l l a i n s are punished — i n fact they have already been punished, for the narrator has considerately gotten r i d of them so they w i l l not s p o i l the happy ending. As he says, "Pour debarasser tout d'un coup mon lecteur de ces odieux personnages, j ' a n t i c i p e r a i sur l'ordre des evenements." (pp. 114-115) The punishment of La Courton and Fisiomon i s suited to thei r crimes. Fisiomon catches a nasty disease i n La Courton's establishment, and "Des q u ' i l s'apercut de 1'ignominieux present q u ' i l avait recu chez e l l e , i l devint furieux, jura q u ' i l en t i r e r a i t vengeance, et t i n t parole." (p. 114) Fisiomon k i l l s La Courton for revenge, and ^The potential implications of lesbianism i n the r e l a t i o n - ship between Lu c i l e and Dangeot are not realized i n L u c i l e , but they come out more strongly i n the f i r s t part of La Femme dans les t r o i s etats de f i l l e , d'epouse, et de mere, which i s a rewrite of Lucile's story. 38 i s arrested. The narrator does well to dispose of the w i l l a i n s before the end of the novel, for their picturesque punishment ri s k s i n s e r t i n g a false note into the edifying tone of the denouement, as set by Lucile's conclusion to her adventures: "II est done v r a i , et tout me l'annonce, q u ' i l vaudrait mieux accepter une chose desagreable, en demeurant dans 1'ordre prescrit par l a nature, que de chercher par l a desobeissance un bonheur imaginaire . . . " (p. 90) Lucile's humility i s becoming, and constitutes an accurate appreciation of the significance of her adventures. Her exper- ience with vice has provided a v i v i d lesson i n i t s insidious- ness; but her experience has also shown the very limited respon- s i b i l i t y of the individual i n determining his morality, to say nothing of his happiness. Such are the advantages and disadvantages for the cause of virtue of presenting the moral c o n f l i c t as a competition between agents of virtue and vice for formation of Lucile's s e n s i b i l i t y . The c o n f l i c t i n Lucile provides a more effective i l l u s t r a t i o n of the dangers of exposure to other people's vices than does the adventure plot of La Famille vertueuse. The vices of secondary characters not only cause physical separation from situations conducive to virtuous love, they also threaten to contaminate Lucile's morals. Since La Courton's actions do not immediately announce themselves as destructive of Lucile's happiness, Lucile makes no effort to r e s i s t their influence. Lucile becomes aware of La Courton's threat to her v i t t u e , 39 but only i n retrospect, and on this point rests the moral significance of her adventures. The nature of the c o n f l i c t permits qual i t a t i v e comparisons between passion and sentiment, but on a theoretical l e v e l only. The c o n f l i c t i s only p o t e n t i a l , i t never becomes r e a l . Passion never becomes a dynamic force that determines Lucile's donduct. Hence she never sees, through direct experience, where she i s headed, and she never has to evaluate the consequences of her conduct for her happiness. It i s of course the intervention of coincidence that prevents passion from reaching the l e v e l of act i n L u c i l e , and allows her to benefit from the guidance of an external sentimental plot; and i t i s a most astonishing coincidence at that. We have been prepared i n the preface for the novelty of seeing a g i r l saved from pr o s t i t u t i o n by her f i r s t c l i e n t : " . . . une jeune personne, qu'une suite d'imprudences precipite dans l e plus affreux danger, et qui l ' e v i t e par les memes moyens que 1'on prend pour consommer l a depravation, offre un tableau nouveau." (p. v i i i ) The moral significance of a story i n which the threat of passion i s disarmed by coincidence resides i n the very uniqueness pointed out by the narrator. As the sentimental plot of La Famille vertueuse has led us to suspect, i t i s events that determine moral values; and i n L u c i l e , i t i s evident that i n the wide world i t i s most unusual i f these events do not have an adverse effect on morality. The only choice one has, given th i s sta,t;e of a f f a i r s , i s to remain i n a context where events are arranged to favor v i r t u e ; where one need not r e l y on the 40 intervention of luck. In a word, one must remain i n a s e n t i - mental plot such as that of La Famille vertueuse i n order to be a l i v i n g example of the attributes and efficacy of v i r t u e . This choice of context becomes i n fact an essential aspect of v i r t u e , as the narrator implies when he says that Lucile's virtue i s already seriously flawed by her f l i g h t from home. Thus the plot renders indulgence i n adventure of limited e d i f i c a t i o n for both characters and reader. The non-epistolary form of the narrative of Lucile further prevents our taking Lucile's adventures as matter for extensive moral r e f l e c t i o n by creating a distance between Lucile and the reader. In La Famille vertueuse, the action i s f i l t e r e d through the s o c i a l consciousness of the participants, who consider the action morally s i g n i f i c a n t . In contrast, the narrative of Lucile suspends the involvement of the reader i n the moral significance of the action, because the narrator imposes the point of view of a detached observer who does not lack a sense of humor. This has been evident i n the l i g h t , sometimes i r o n i c , tone of the passages we have cited i n discussing the p l o t . The detachment of the narrator i s not sustained, however, and this too i s s i g n i f i c a n t . In the portion of the narrative devoted to Lucile's return to v i r t u e , the narrator's voice imposes a greater preoccupation with the moral resonances of his subject. He adopts a serious, even pompous style similar to that of La Famille vertueuse to develop i n minute d e t a i l Lucile's virtuous sentiments, as i f to make the reader forget, as Lucile forgets, the somewhat scabrously entertaining 41 acquaintance with corruption. Thus i n Luc i l e we are witness to a collaboration between p l o t , narrative point of view, and style to n u l l i f y the moral e d i f i c a t i o n of events i n the big world. This would seem to imply a rejection by the author of this kind of f i c t i o n a l action, which exteriorizes moral antagonists i n a circumstantial con- f l i c t . Though such a c o n f l i c t e f f e c t i v e l y gives tangible form to the abstract concepts of virtue and v i c e , i t does not, by i t s very nature, show a very extensive a p p l i c a b i l i t y of these values. In Le Piedcde Fanchette, ou L' Orpheline francaise (1769), we have confirmation of the impression given by Luc i l e that Restif did not consider a f i c t i o n a l c o n f l i c t moved by f o r t u i - tous events a substantial way of dealing with moral issues. Fanchette develops the same theme as L u c i l e , the v u l n e r a b i l i t y of v i r t u e , but i n a way that makes the moralism of virtue.!s ultimate triumph more e x p l i c i t l y i r o n i c . The sentimental plot i s e ntirely eliminated from Fanchette, for there i s no pretense of r e l a t i n g the c o n f l i c t to the personality of the main character. The narrative consists e n t i r e l y of a succession of physical attacks on the heroine's v i r t u e ; these are the obstacles that retard her finding happiness i n marriage with a virtuous charac- t e r , whom we meet i n the course of the action. As a r e s u l t , the circumstantial nature of the adventure plot — and of virtue — i s self-consciously exaggerated. Fanchette i s manifestly not a moral novel, i n spite of the fact that the vocabulary of 42 morality i s l i b e r a l l y sprinkled throughout the narrative. The narrator's burlesque announcement of his subject i n the prefatory chapter prepares us to take an i r o n i c view of the l i g h t varnish of moralism subsequently applied to Fanchette's adventures: "Je suis l ' h i s t o r i e n veridique des conquetes b r i l l a n t e s du Pied mignon d'une b e l l e , " he proclaims, and addressing the great conquerors of history from Winus to Louis XIV, he adds, . . . pavilion bas . . . Vous avez regne sur les hommes que f i t trembler votre redoutable puissance; et Fanchette, jeune, sans nom, sans naissance; mais avec un minois seduisant, des yeux pleins de dou- ceur, un pied .... ah c i e l I un pied.... comme on n'en v i t jamais, tant i l est j o l i , regne, par 1 amour sur tous l e s coeurs. 7 There follows an account of how the narrator came by this epopee of the foot, on a tone that hardly enhances the serious- ness of the subject. This account constitutes a story i n i t s e l f , and provides material for two chapters. It immediately becomes evident that we are not confronted here with a conven- t i o n a l j u s t i f i c a t i o n of an incredible story i n the name of tr u t h , but rather with a s a t i r e of that convention. The very accumulation of d e t a i l s i n the narrator's disavowal of respon- s i b i l i t y for his narrative casts serious doubt on the c r e d i - b i l i t y £>f his devotion to truth. This doubt i s confirmed by the fact that he exposes his sources i n a chapter entitled "Qui n'en imposera pas au l e c t e u r " . 'Le Pied de Fanchette, ou L'Orpheline francaise (Francfort et L e i p s i g , 1769), I, 9-11. 43 The narrator has seen Panchette i n the street, and has been overcome by admiration for her charms and by the consequent desire to know her story. He then for t u i t o u s l y encounters the only person i n possession of the truth about Fanchette. This indi v i d u a l promises to lend the manuscript containing Fanchette's secrets to the narrator, for a generous reason: "Vous, me d i t - i l , qui ne vous repaissez que de chimeres, auteur infortune de romans plus malheureux encore, je veux vous procurer les moyens de dire v r a i au moins une f o i s dans votre v i e . " ( I , 16) This i s but the beginning of the narrator's t r i b u l a t i o n s , however. The old man who has promised the manuscript i s f i r s t too busy to keep his promise, and then loses the manuscript. A valet has taken i t "pour en f a i r e des papillotes!" ( I , 17) After a number of other mishaps, the manuscript i s f i n a l l y pieced together, and we can get on with Fanchette's story. It i s to be hoped that our cu r i o s i t y i s by now as thoroughly whetted as the narrator's own by these multiple obstructions. We have been thoroughly prepared to see a l l sorts of abuses of v e r i s i m i l i t u d e i n Fanchette, and we are not disappointed. We w i l l not attempt to trace the complicated plot i n d e t a i l , but w i l l simply give i t s general outlines and a sampling of i t s atmosphere. Fanchette, the orphaned daughter of a merchant, has been given into the care of Apateon, a friend of her father. She i s soon forced to flee this haven, however, because Apateon Q has unpaternal designs on her. Apateon's housekeeper, Nene, Q We are informed that the name Apateon i s Greek for trompeur. 44 aids Fanchette to triumph i n this f i r s t attack on her v i r t u e , for she has Fanchette's interests at heart. Nene i s , i n her own words, firmly determined that Apateon "n'en tatera brin." ( I , 45) Nene's choice of the word tater to designate Apateon 1 s intentions i s appropriate. It i s his reliance on his sense of touch that permits Nene to obstruct his f i r s t attempt on Fanchette. Apateon executes his plan of seduction under the cover of darkness, s l i p p i n g into Fanchette's bed after she i s asleep, with the following r e s u l t : "Enfin i l entend soupirer; i l ne se possede plus: sa bouche cherche c e l l e de Fanchette: ses mains pressent.... — 0 c i e l ! s ' e c r i e - t - i l , en reculant d'horreur! que viens-je de toucher l a ! Ce n'est pas ma j o l i e Fanchette, c'est un monstre qui l a remplace — " . ( I , 44) It i s of course Nene who has worked the t r a d i t i o n a l switch. Nene places Fanchette under the protection of a kindly dressmaker, but this hardly suffices to preserve Fanchette from further attacks. Nothing can replace the protection of a family, and Fanchette i s aware of her underprivileged status, for she r e f l e c t s , Heureuse mille f o i s l a jeune f i l l e , que n'abandonne jamais une mere prudente et cherie! E l l e coule, au sein de 1'innocence, des jours fortunes et tran- q u i l l e s : sa mainan voit pour e l l e ; e l l e l u i f a i t eviter l e danger; e l l e l a preserve des discours trompeurs; e l l e l a defend contre les temeraires . . . l o r s q u ' i l en est temps, cette mere sage conduit elle-meme par l a main aupres de sa f i l l e , l'aimable jeune homme qu'elle l u i destine. (I , 141-142) Fanchette i s more innocent and unfortunate than l u c i l e , for she has not chosen to be alone i n the big world. Another point i s scored for the family as the proper context for v i r t u e . Not 45 only i s membership i n a family a duty, i t i s a p r i v i l e g e . Fanchette i s aware that her beauty makes her deprivation of family support a l l the more dangerous, for i t makes active the host of enemies, who use " l a finesse, l a douceur, l a violence, l'amour" ( I , 141) to provoke her downfall. Fanchette attempts to conceal her beauty, but to no a v a i l , because her foot i s the most seductive part of her. So although she muffles herself to the eyes when she goes out, "comme une femme turque qui sort pour a l l e r au bain", "tous les yeux se fix a i e n t sur son j o l i pied: e l l e ne rencontra pas un homme dont i l ne touchat'.- l e coeur; pas une femme dont i l n'emut l a b i l e . . . " ( I , 89). Fanchette's i n a b i l i t y to be inconspicuous results i n the repeated attempts on her v i r t u e , i n the form of abductions, that compose most of the movement of the novel. She i s always rescued i n time by her frie n d s , however, led by her favorite s u i t o r , Lus- s a n v i l l e . One of her shoes, l o s t along the way, frequently leads her rescuers to her. She ultimately finds security i n a convent, which she leaves only to marry Lussanville. Fanchette's story ends on a note of triumph for v i r t u e , but the bow to morality i s added almost as an afterthought, and on a facetious tone: "Tout l e monde nagea dans l a j o i e . C'est a i n s i que l'amour et l a fortune se reunirent pour recompenser l a vertu." ( I I , 153) I f we compare this conclusion with another comment addressed to Fanchette, ". . . l e c i e l sauva votre vertu comme par miracle . . . " ( I I , 151), we are highly doubtful that Fanchette can take the credit for keeping her virtue ...intact. The mul t i p l i c a t i o n of fantastic and 46 e r o t i c a l l y suggestive adventures over-proves, i f anything, the unlikelihood of virtue's survival i n the world of adventure. The narrator helps along the impression we have of the s u p e r f i c i a l i t y of the novel's moral significance. He sometimes intrudes to deny r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for the a r t i f i c i a l i t y of his narrative. Such denials mainly serve of course to c a l l attention to this very a r t i f i c i a l i t y , as i f the narrator wanted to prevent the reader from becoming too involved i n the narrative. On one occasion, for example, he obtrusively points out that the reader should be interested i n Fanchette's motivations, which are not revealed by the narrative: "Cher et curieux lecteur, les memoires ou. j ' a i puises ne disent r i e n de ses motifs: Mais s i vous voulez, je f e r a i comme les autres historiens mes confreres, je vous donnerai mes conjectures pour des r e a l i t e s . . . " ( I I , 111-112). This teasing of the reader with the emptiness of a narrative that sticks to facts knowable by the narrator might be i n t e r - preted as a c r i t i c i s m of omniscient authors, but i t i s more l i k e l y a s a t i r e of the s u p e r f i c i a l i t y of the adventure novel as exemplified by Fanchette. Since the "truth" the narrator claims to be r e l a t i n g i s obviously fabricated — the narrator p r a c t i c a l l y dares us to swallow whole his claim to being an "historien veridique" — his r e f u s a l , i n the name of this same trut h , to use his imagination i n dealing with his characters' motivations must be i r o n i c . This irony i s not present throughout the narrative, however. In extensive passages the mocking narrator disappears, and the narrative i s presented at face value. In view of this incon- sistency, we may conclude that Fanchette "implies" the author les s as an uncompromising c r i t i c of novels i n which assertions of the truth of external event, however extravagant, and of morality, however u n j u s t i f i e d , are claims to seriousness, than as an author who has a penchant for adventure novels, but i s aware of th e i r shortcomings. I f penchant there was, i t seems to have been temporarily exorcised by Fanchette, for i n his next novel, Restif turns to a much more serious, direct t r e a t - ment of moral issues. Lettres de Lord Austin de N* g g  a Lord Humfrey de Dorset, 9 son ami, subtitled La Confidence necessaire, was written and published at approximately the same time as Fanchette. In Restif's own words., this novel i s "une peinture de l a s i t u a t i o n de mon coeur, lorsque, dans ma premiere jeunesse, j'aimais plusieurs f i l l e s a. l a f o i s ; ce n'est pas une h i s t o i r e veritable; mais c'est une sit u a t i o n v r a i e , et un tableau f i d e l e . " x u  We are thus prepared to find i n this novel a very different kind of "truth" than i n Fanchette. Given our structural point of view, this means that La Confidence necessaire offers a f i r s t glimpse of the influence of personal i n s p i r a t i o n on the f i c t i o n a l form, hence on the theme of morality and happiness. It i s only a glimpse, however, for the new plot variation ^This i s also the t i t l e of the second edi t i o n . We use th i s t i t l e i n our discussion of the novel, for i t i s more i n d i - cative of the theme than the o r i g i n a l . 1 Q Monsieur Nicolas (Paris; Pauvert, 1959), I I I , 565. 48 introduced by this novel i s not sustained throughout the narrative. We w i l l c a l l this structural variation the internal sentimental p l o t , because the hero's own nature has a more important role i n determining his morality and his happiness than i n the external sentimental or adventure p l o t s . The hindrance of the hero's own passions to commitment to virtue i s more active; i t influences his.happiness; but i n La Confi- dence necessaire, this influence i s not d e f i n i t i v e . As we s h a l l see, the new, more active l i n k between the hero's nature, his morality, and his happiness created by this plot i s cut short by the intervention of an external sentimental p l o t . The internal sentimental plot traces., i n the f i r s t part of the novel, the development of the c o n f l i c t between the main character's passions and his sentiments. ..In this portion of the narrative, Lord Austin, the hero, r e l a t e s the story of his past escapades i n l e t t e r s to his intimate f r i e n d , Lord Humfrey, who has e l i c i t e d this confession. Austin's problems begim when vague notions of love trouble his relationship with two female childhood companions. He describes this awakening of his s e n s i b i l i t y : A quinze ans, les desirs commencerent a d i l a t e r insensiblement mon coeur. Qu'il serait doux, me d i s a i s - j e quelquefois, d'avoir une maitresse tendre et j o l i e ; de recevoir d'une bouche cherie ces noms fl a t t e u r s que l'amour f a i t donner; de savourer sur des levres de rose un baiser a moitie r a v i ; de presser dans ses bras une amante timide! Ah! que tout cela serait doux, s i cette f i l l e aimable e t a i t ou l a seduisante A l i c e , ou l a jeune Bess.lH Lettres de Lord Austin de N a Lord Humfrey de Dorset, son ami (Cambridge et Londres: Nourse, Snelling, 17697, I, 51-52. 49 Austin i s thus thoroughly disposed to find happiness i n love; but i n what kind of love, and with whom? As indicated by this expression of his etat d'ame, his dreams of love represent a vague mixture of sentimentality and sensuality, and are associated with two g i r l s , both of whom return his a f f e c - t i o n . Ultimately, i t i s the choice of the g i r l that determines the precise nature of his sentiments. It soon becomes evident that Austin i s not subject to the same kind of attr a c t i o n to both g i r l s . He has a d i s t i n c t sentimental preference for A l i c e , but this preference i s countered by an i r r e s i s t i b l e physical a t t r a c t i o n to Bess — whose l a s t name i s P o l l y , by the way. As Austin indicates, his dilemma i s t o t a l : Je revais a mes amours, a mes maitresses: je ne pouvais me resoudre a s a c r i f i e r n i l'une n i 1'autre. Cependant A l i c e m'etait l a plus chere; mais Bess et a i t s i b e l l e , s i tendre.... je ne pouvais soutenir l'idee da chagriner Bess. (I, 125-226) This i s not to say that Austin's love for Alic e i s devoid of desire, or that his love for Bess i s devoid of tenderness. Ultimately, the choice he makes between.the two g i r l s commits him to p r i n c i p a l l y sentimental, or to p r i n c i p a l l y sensual love. Before Austin makes his choice, however, he becomes acquainted with a thir d kind of love, which influences that choice. The housekeeper of Austin's tutor, Mawd, has i n i t i a t e d him into the purely physical aspects of love. This experience does not bring i n a thir d element of c o n f l i c t , however, for as Austin says, "Le gout passager que Mawd m'inspira n'etait qu'une ivresse: aupres d ' e l l e , et dans ses bras meme, je sentais un vide; je cherchais quelquechose qui me manquait." ( I , 156) 50 Although. Austin finds sensuality devoid of tenderness d i s s a t i s f y i n g , his experience with Mawd does have an e f f e c t . It shows him the true outlet of the vague desires that have been tormenting him. He i s further in c i t e d to s a t i s f y these desires by the inflammatory conversation of Prank, a corrupt shepherd. The c r i s i s i s not long i n coming. It appears that catas- trophe has been averted, because Austin overcomes th i s new imperiousness of his passions i n order to exchange solemn oaths of eternal f i d e l i t y with A l i c e . But alas, Austin i s wrong i n thinking he has resolved the c o n f l i c t between his sentiments and his sensuality. He succumbs to the charms of Bess immedi- ately after his solemn engagement to A l i c e . He has met Bess by accident, and i s unable to t e l l her that his heart belongs to another, for "L'innocente Polly me caressait. L'ardente volupte se g l i s s a i t dans mes veines; e l l e eblouit ma raison.... L'experience que Mawd m'avait donnee hata l a defaite de Bess." ( I , 184) This i s the f i r s t r e a l involvement of a Restivian hero i n passion. Austin's involvement i s thorough, for i t i s emo- tio n a l as well as physical; but at f i r s t glance, i t hardly seems as catastrophic as the implied e t h i c a l norm of the e a r l i e r novels has led us to believe: Et j'etais heureux, apres cette action criminelle! je jouis encore de tous les f r u i t s de mon indigne v i c t o i r e ! . . . Apres avoir accorde l a supreme faveur, s i tu savais combien une f i l l e innocente, dont l'ame pure ne soupconne pas meme qu'elle a f a i l l i , s i tu savais combien e l l e est tendrel Gomme e l l e est touchante, dans ces moments de desordre, ou son tein t est anime par l e p l a i s i r et 51 nuance par l a pudeurl ou sa main, qui s'egare, cherche a rajuster sa parure! E l l e jette sur son amant un regard timide, et semble l u i demander q u ' i l j u s t i f i e l a faiblesse qu'elle vient d'avoir, par l a v i v a c i t e de ses transports. Que ces heureux instants ont de charmes pour un coeur d e l i c a t ! II ne desire de jouir encore, que pour les f a i r e r e n a i t r e . ( I , 185-186) Austin i s immediately forced to take a more moral view of his seduction of Bess, however. Alice's father, who i s aware of Austin's engagement to his daughter, arrives at the end of this interesting scene. The disapproval of Alice's father makes Austin r e a l i z e that his actions are i n need of j u s t i f i - cation: A l i c e meritait toute ma Constance, et Bess ne devait pas etre l a vietime d'un gout passager. J'etais f a i b l e ; un temperament bouillant m'egarait, je cedais alors sans resistance au charme de l a beaute: Prank m'avait gate l e coeur; Mawd avait excite l e gout du p l a i s i r . . . . Voila. mes excuses; je crains bien qu'elles ne soient i n s u f f i s a n t e s . Cependant je ne me consolerais jamais q u ' i l y eut dans toute ma vie un seul instant, ou l'on a i t pu me compter au nombre des seducteurs; au moins, tu l e v o l s , j  1  eus des remords.... (I , 191) -̂2 Remorse, recognition of his f a u l t , i s not the only price Austin pays.for giving free r e i n to his sensuality. It has much more extensive consequences for his happiness. Bess becomes pregnant, and A l i c e dies of chagrin at this concrete proof of Austin's i n f i d e l i t y (she has forgiven other, less decisive, i n f i d e l i t i e s ) , and at Austin's determination to We note i n passing the defensive attitude of Austin as regards his sensuality. It i s t y p i c a l of Restif's internal sentimental heroes to consider themselves victims of their sensuality, or to j u s t i f y i t i n the name of generosity (as does Austin, cited above, page 50) or of s e n s i b i l i t y . This w i l l come out more strongly i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . 52 marry Bess. Austin's offer to marry Bess i s refused, for reasons that w i l l be revealed l a t e r . When Austin learns of Alice's death, he f a l l s dangerously i l l . His true parents, who have remained mysterious for reasons not p a r t i c u l a r l y relevant to the story, appear i n order to care for him, physically and morally. Here begins Austin's return to v i r t u e , which takes place, s i g n i f i - cantly enough, within the protective family f o l d . The i m p l i - cation i s that his passions have gained a strong lead over his sentiments because he i s not i n his proper context. As we s h a l l see, however, the subtle authoritarianism of the virtuous s o c i a l context i s more e f f e c t i v e l y reaffirmed after this temporary loss of control over events than i n L u c i l e . For Austin, as for Cecily and Lucile, commitment to virtue means renunciation of sensuality as motivation. Austin's sporadically remorseful tone i n narrating his amorous adventures would seem to indicate that he has made that s a c r i f i c e , but further confirmation i s needed. This confirmation i s provided by the remainder of the l e t t e r s , which now deal with events contemporary to the correspondence. It becomes increasingly evident that Lord Humfrey, Austin's correspondent, has not e l i c i t e d these confessions out of i d l e c u r i o s i t y . He i s testing the s i n c e r i t y of Austin's remorse, for much l i k e Leonor's father i n La Famille vertueuse, he i s interested i n discovering the hero's true moral i d e n t i t y . This id e n t i t y i s again revealed as virtuous i f the hero indicates that i n his heart of hearts, he r e a l l y loves the virtuous g i r l . We suspect, of course, that confirmation of Austin's constancy w i l l have an influence on his fate; he w i l l not be obliged to take eternal comfort i n his f i d e l i t y to Alice's memory. We have had ample hints, i n f a c t , that Alic e i s s t i l l among the l i v i n g , and i s simply waiting for proof of the worthiness of Austin's sentiments before reappearing. This of course i s why the confidence i s necessaire. Proof of Austin's f i d e l i t y to Alice's memory i s mainly given i n the fact that he consistently r e s i s t s the attempts of his family and Lord Humfrey to interest him i n marriage to Lord Humfrey's s i s t e r , Adela'is. Austin i s not even tempted, despite assurances that Adela'is i s much l i k e A l i c e i n beauty, charm and vi r t u e ; her portr a i t even bears a strong resemblance to A l i c e . Austin eventually re l e n t s , out of friendship for Lord Humfrey, but he makes i t clear to Adelais that theirs would not be a marriage of love. His indifference to the charms of Adela'is i n s u l t s the g i r l ; but this i n f r a c t i o n of the rules of galantry i s taken as ultimate proof that Austin i s entirely absorbed i n his love for A l i c e . Austin's constancy i s undeniable proof of the power of his love for A l i c e , because there i s apparently no reward i n sight for his virtuous conduct. The unhoped for. reward i s not long i n coming, however, for A l i c e i s at l a s t ressuscitated. Austin's friendship for Lord Humfrey i s preserved into the bargain, for as we had long suspected, Alic e i s i n r e a l i t y the s i s t e r i n question, and has been destined since b i r t h to marry Austin. This i s of course why Austin was not allowed to 54 marry Bess. Austin and Adelais are married. Austin's passions are now legitimized by the p r i o r i t y he has given to sentiment, and of course by marriage. He p r o f i t s from th i s new re s p e c t a b i l i t y of his sensuality to end his correspondence with a t i t i l l a t i n g evocation of his wedding night: Malgre toute mon ardeur, je n'ai pas precipite" 1'instant de l a volupte supreme: les moindres faveurs sont d'un s i grand prix, quand Adela'is les accorde! prolongeons l e p l a i s i r ; sentons sa delicieuse ivresse; on l e double en l e d i f f e r a n t . 0 moments.... Cher Humfrey! brule, consume de mille feux, r i e n ne s'opposait plus.... J ' a i vaincu cet obstacle charmant, qui jadis sauva son innocence.... ( I I , 211-212) Let us not allow the erotic note of the f i n a l e to d i s t r a c t us from the moral significance of this novel. Austin's f i n a l expression of his sensuality completes the sense of an arduous moral-sentimental.education that sheds new l i g h t on the place of sensuality i n virtuous happiness. La Confidence necessaire presents a much more direct t r e a t - ment than the e a r l i e r novels of some of the problems involved i n r e c o n c i l i n g morality and happiness. It does so by acknow- ledging the necessity of including passion i n virtuous love — , within l i m i t s . Both this acknowledgmenttand i t s l i m i t a t i o n s , as well as the j u s t i f i a b i l i t y of these lim i t a t i o n s i n the name of happiness, are implied i n a number of c l e a r l y i d e n t i f i a b l e Another reason i s that Bess and Austin do not belong to the same so c i a l c l a s s . The i n j u s t i c e of s a c r i f i c i n g Bess to class prejudice i s tempered by the fact that a husband of her own class i s found for her—one who does not object to the flaw i n her v i r t u e . 55 innovations i n f i c t i o n a l structure. In this novel, the passivity t y p i c a l of the external sentimental hero i s eliminated temporarily. The her.o possesses a personality that determines events, whereas i n La Famille vertueuse and L u c i l e , the main characters are essentially anonymous objects shaped by others. This new dynamic role of the hero's personality i s supported by the narrative point of view. The epistolary form allows Austin to reveal his own motivations and actions d i r e c t l y , rather than having them f i l t e r e d through the moral consciousness of other characters or of the narrator. Although some interpretation of Austin's actions i n the l i g h t of morality i s provided by the mature hero's judgments of his behavior, this often occurs only after the actions have been allowed to speak for themselves. As a result of these structural contrasts between La Confidence necessaire and the other novels we have studied, the d e f i n i t i o n of moral values i s considerably modified. But the new conception of moral values does not create a more essential l i n k between morality and happiness than the one we have found i n the plots of the other novels. The l i n k i s i n fact more a r t i f i c i a l than ever, for other structural reasons we s h a l l shortly consider. On the l e v e l of d e f i n i t i o n of moral values, the internal sentimental plot of La Confidence necessaire has attenuated the contrast between passion and sentimental virtue by concre- t i z i n g the hindrance to commitment to v i r t u e , passion, i n the personality of the main character. In the other novels, passion i s defined as vice by i t s relegation to an adventure plot i n 56 which characters motivated by passion are agents for destruction of happiness. In La Confidence necessaire, on the other hand, passion inhabits the same world, even the same personality, as sentiment. This does not lead to the moral schizophrenia we have observed i n Cecily and L u c i l e . In Austin, passion and sentiment are intimately associated, and are a function of the same personality t r a i t — a highly developed s e n s i b i l i t y . As a r e s u l t , the hindrance to virtue i s no longer brutal passion or corruption, but sensuality. The expression of love, as a sign of one's moral nature, does not represent a choice between rape and platonic love, but rather between primarily physical or primarily sentimental a t t r a c t i o n . Passion i s no longer sordid and repulsive, either; i t i s actually a source of happi- ness. Thus a r e a l choice between sentiment and passion exists for the f i r s t time, and the choice i s d i f f i c u l t , for i t involves a s a c r i f i c e . The solution i s not self-evident, as i t i s i n the other novels. Austin ultimately discovers, of course, that whether we c a l l i t vice or natural sensuality, ungoverned passion i s ho s t i l e to r e a l happiness. As might be expected of an internal sentimental p l o t , the d i s t i n c t i o n of value between passion and sentiment comes through direct experience of their inherent consequences. The fact that Austin's seduction of Bess causes Alice's death makes him r e a l i z e that he i s fundamentally committed to sentimental love, or, as he says, that " . . . je n'aimais qu'Alice, la. seule A l i c e , comme on doit aimer; et que je n'avais que du gout, ou peut-etre que de l a reconnaissance pour Bess." ( I , 152-153) Confirmation of this commitment to s e n t i - mental love furthermore restores his happiness. Thus Austin's experience constitutes a much more effective moral-sentimental education than that of his predecessors. It provides him with empirical evidence that happiness depends on commitment to sentimentality f i r s t , and to sensuality second. Prom Austin's point of view,..sensuality i s placed i n the perspective that R e s t i f imagined to be the perspective offered by a l l of his novels: . . . je n'ai pas, comme les enthousiastes, condamne tous les p l a i s i r s , mais j ' a i tache de vous i n s p i r e r l'horreur de 1'adultersi. Honorable lec t e u r , je ne vous a i jamais d i t que l'amour physique fut un crime, et je vous a i toujours d i t que l'amour moral est une vertu . . . Non, l'amour physique n'est pas un crime, nonl C'est l a plus be l l e faculte des etres vivants, mais faculte sainte, sacree, respectable, dont l'abus est l e plus affreux des crimes.14 Abuse of the faculty of sensuality comes to have a rather l i b e r a l d e f i n i t i o n i n Restif's l a t e r novels. In the early novels, however, sensuality i s subject to r i g i d and uncompro- mising controls. As we have seen i n La Confidence necessaire, and as we s h a l l see i n R e s t i f s next novel, passion must be expressed i n the right way, at the right time, and toward the right person to be an acceptable part of virtue — and a r e a l source of happiness. We must question, however, whether this novel's r e s t r i c t i v e acknowledgment of the relevance of sensu- a l i t y to virtue has r e a l l y valorized any more e f f e c t i v e l y than Les Contemporaines (Paris, 1875), I, 304. 58 La Famille vertueuse or Lucile the monopoly of sentimental v i r t u e on happiness. The question i s again imposed by the plot structure. We have observed that Austin i s the hero of an internal sentimental plot only up to a point. Beginning with the disastrous effect of his actions on A l i c e , he becomes the passive object of an 15 external sentimental p l o t . .Although Austin i s certainly responsible for the events that lead up to the catastrophe, he does not cause the disaster d i r e c t l y . Alice's death i s only simulated, and this supposes outside intervention (Alice i s too passive to take the i n i t i a t i v e h e r s e l f ) . Austin's commit- ment to virtue i s not, therefore, made necessary by his own actions, i t i s a response to events arranged by his family and fr i e n d s . This intervention by context to resolve the c o n f l i c t between sentiment and sensuality i s much more detrimental to the i n t e g r i t y of virtuous happiness than i t i s i n La Famille vertueuse, however. Due to the fact that i t occurs afte r the hindrance of sensuality i s thoroughly and d i r e c t l y developed i n the personality of the main character, the arbitrariness of the d e f i n i t i o n of nature as sentiment i s unmistakable. What i s implied by omission i n La Famille vertueuse i s thus made IS The way i n which this passivity i s indicated shows that the internal and external sentimental plots do not mix well i n an epistolary novel that adopts the point of view of the hero. Austin has to impose his passivity on himself when he becomes an external sentimental hero; he has to indicate that he i s being manipulated without knowing he i s being manipulated. Thus the focus on the hero's personality i n this novel i s effective i n enhancing the r e a l i t y of the hindrance to commitment to v i r t u e , but i t i s distr e s s i n g l y awkward i n showing how this hindrance i s suppressed from outside, and makes the hero seem uncharacteristically lethargic and obtuse. p r a c t i c a l l y e x p l i c i t i n La Confidence necessaire: nature i s insubordinate to the determinism of the world of v i r t u e . Not only does nature submit with d i f f i c u l t y to a selective d e f i n i - t i o n as sentimentality, i t threatens to find satisfactions outside the domain of v i r t u e . In R e s t i f s next novel, La F i l l e n a t u r e l l e , we have the other example among R e s t i f s early novels of an internal sentimental plot that deals d i r e c t l y with the par t i c i p a t i o n of nature i n the issue of morality and happiness. As a r e s u l t , an empirical si t u a t i o n i s again created that punctures the i l l u s i o n maintained by the external sentimental plot that there i s a natural, necessary l i n k between nature, morality, and happiness. ^ n  £ a F i l l e naturelle (1769), Restif has moved a long way from the s t e r i l e and readily resolved c o n f l i c t of La Famille vertueuse, L u c i l e and Fanchette, i n which the only r e a l h i n - drance to virtuous happiness are the passions of easily ostra- cised secondary characters. The period of the characters.' experimentation with morality i s pursued even further i n this novel than i n La Confidence necessaire. This i s made possible for the same structural reasons that the experiment i s even able to begin i n the preceding novel. The hindrances to commit- ment to virtue are again developed d i r e c t l y , as a function of the personality of the main character, beyond the control of s o c i a l context. They are furthermore developed i n such a way as to make thei r moral color, and their relationship to happiness, even more ambiguous than i n La Confidence necessaire. 60 We are not immediately involved i n this c o n f l i c t , however. When we f i r s t meet the hero of La F i l l e n a turelle, D'Azinval, the obstacles to his commitment to virtue have already been overcome, and the only problem remaining i s to make this virtue a source of happiness. The opportunity presents i t s e l f i n the person of a young orphan, Marion, whom D'Azinval meets i n the stree t . Moved by pity and a mysterious sympathy, D'Azinval takes charge of Marion's material and moral comfort. Under his protection she blossoms into a young woman of beauty, charm and v i r t u e . D'Azinval f a l l s i n love with his protegee, and intends to marry her when her education, that i s , her moral formation, i s complete. D'Azinval sees i n Marion the ideal wife, and his reasons give us another insight into the Restivian conception of conjugal relationships, i n which passion i d e a l l y takes a back seat to more constructive sentiments: "Marion me devra tout; je f e r a i tout pour e l l e : ses moeurs, son etat, sa fortune, tout sera mon ouvrage 1  e l l e envisagera dans l e meme homme, un pere, son bienfaiteur, et son epoux.""'"̂  These utopic plans are brought to a halt when D'Azinval, struck by the increasing resemblance of Marion to his former mistress, d i s - covers that she i s i n fact his daughter. This, however, i s not an obstacle to his happiness; but readers familiar with Restif's autobiography, Monsieur Micolas, w i l l be disappointed i f they expect incest to be D'Azinval's solution;.. His happiness does not depend upon the sensual satisfactions promised by ^ L a F i l l e naturelle (Paris: Huinblot, Quillau, 1769), I, 66. 61 m a r r i a g e t o Ma r i o n . As the above e x p r e s s i o n of D ' A z i n v a l ' s s e n t i m e n t s i n d i c a t e s , h i s a f f e c t i o n f o r M a r i o n i s p r i m a r i l y p a t e r n a l , and i t a d j u s t s e a s i l y t o p a t e r n i t y of f a c t . The e s s e n t i a l c o n f l i c t of the n o v e l occurs i n the s t o r y of D ' A z i n v a l ' s p a s t , which comes to l i g h t when D ' A z i n v a l f i n d s the woman t o whom Marion's d y i n g mother had e n t r u s t e d her daughter s h o r t l y a f t e r b i r t h . B e f o r e r e v e a l i n g h i s i d e n t i t y , D ' A z i n v a l e l i c i t s t h i s woman's v e r s i o n o f the s t o r y of Marion's mother, Laurence. To h i s g r e a t d i s t r e s s , he l e a r n s t h a t Laurence d i e d i n d e s p a i r , b e l i e v i n g she had been abandoned by her love3J. D ' A z i n v a l i s o f course f o r c e d t o r e c o g n i z e t h a t he i s the l o v e r i n q u e s t i o n , and he t e l l s h i s s i d e of the s t o r y t o c o r r e c t the i m p r e s s i o n t h a t Laurence was the v i c t i m of a v i l e seducer. D ' A z i n v a l r e v e a l s t h a t h i s l o v e f o r Laurence was s i n c e r e , but was not approved by h i s mother, who m i s t a k e n l y b e l i e v e d t h a t Laurence was a f o r t u n e - h u n t i n g a d v e n t u r e s s and the daughter of a c r i m i n a l . A f t e r a s t r u g g l e w i t h h i s c o n s c i e n c e and a f r u i t l e s s attempt t o sway h i s mother, D ' A z i n v a l m a r r i e d Laurence i n a c l a n d e s t i n e r e l i g i o u s ceremony, which, a c c o r d i n g t o law, was of course not a marriage a t a l l . D ' A z i n v a l ' s mother d i s - covered t h a t he was s t i l l s e e i n g Laurence, and unaware t h a t the two l o v e r s were m a r r i e d i n the eyes of the church , i m p r i s o n e d her son t o cure him o f what she b e l i e v e d t o be a p a s s i n g f a n c y f o r a woman of easy v i r t u e . D ' A z i n v a l i s thus a c q u i t t e d of r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r h i s unhappiness and t h a t of Laurence. Indeed, i f we c o n s i d e r the 62 motivations accompanying the actions of the two lovers, we are l e f t with the impression that the moral antagonisms established i n the other novels have been inverted i n La F i l l e naturelle. The hindrance to virtuous happiness seems to come from the hero's family — i n this case D'Azinval 1s mother — and the force for commitment to virtue, from the r e c a l c i t r a n t lovers. The love between D'Azinval and Laurence i s presented i n much more virtuous terms than i s Austin's passion for Bess. D'Azinval's love does not constitute an i n f i d e l i t y to anyone, and i t i s less motivated by sensuality than i s Austin's. It i s , i n fact, what Austin's love for A l i c e might have been had he not been encouraged to separate sensuality and sentiment. As D'Azinval expresses his sentiments to Laurence's friend, "J'etais sans experience: aucune femme n'avait encore f a i t sur mon coeur 1'impression l a plus legere; toute ma s e n s i b i l i t e semblait s'etre reservee pour votre amie: ce fut un torrent." (II, 22) The reserve of Laurence further places t h e i r love on a plane far above the impetuous sensuality of Austin and Bess. She gives herself to D'Azinval i n terms that deny the passional nature of her action: Je m'abandonne a. ta probite: Souviens-toi que je me donne; que tu ne m'as point seduite, eblouie, trompee; que tu ne devras point ta v i c t o i r e a 1'emotion de mes sens: mais a. l'amour, a. l'estime, a. l a tendresse l a plus pure, l a plus constante. Je me rends: mais s i je croyais que ce fut par faiblesse, je ne me rendrais pas. Je t'accorde l e prix de l'amour, parQe que je crois que tu l e merites . . . Je veux que tu ne doutes pas, que tu ne l e dois qu'a ma confiance, a mon devoument pour t o i . (II, 43-44) Lest the reader think Laurence i s given to such eloquent speeches at the moment of according " l e prix de 1'amour", l e t us just point out that these are the terms of a sort of contract drawn up between Laurence and D'Azinval to solemnize their commitment to each other. The union of the two lovers i s furthermore sanctified by- r e l i g i o n . This preserves Laurence's i l l u s i o n of innocence, which as the priest points out, i s as good as innocence i t s e l f : " . . . e l l e va se croire votre legitime epouse, et se respecter elle-meme: l a persuasion qu'elle est honnete, f a i t qu'on l'est toujours . . . " ( I I , 63) Even the b i r t h of the i l l e g i t i m a t e c h i l d i s j u s t i f i e d i n the name of s o c i a l v i r t u e s . Laurence's friend reassures Laurence on this point (at this stage she i s i n need of reassurance, for D'Azinval has disappeared): " . . . qui oserait penser, qui l'o s e r a i t soutenir, que nous sommes a v i l i e s par l a seule chose qui nous reste pour nous mettre au rang des citoyennes?" ( I , 124) Such motives tend to make the lovers seem more unfortunate than g u i l t y , especially when we compare them to the motives of the opposition to their union. I f the at.titudes of the lovers seem more s o c i a l than a n t i s o c i a l , those of D'Azinval's mother are correspondingly less than pure. She has obstructed the union of Laurence and D'Azinval i n terms that convey less a defense of v i r t u e , and of her son's happiness, than an unrea- sonable severity, and an almost pathological reluctance to give up authority over a mature son. The statement i s actually made that under these circumstances emancipation from the rule of f i l i a l obedience i s legitimate: "La soumission des enfants ne 64 doit point etre aveugle; e l l e a des bornes raisonnables; et ce serait une i n j u s t i c e , abuser des l o i x de l a nature meme, de vouloir toujours regner en despote sur ceux qui nous doivent l a v i e . " ( I , 160) Thus the moral issues i n La F i l l e naturelle are extremely ambiguous. The d i s t i n c t i o n between right and wrong i s even less self-evident than i n La Confidence necessaire. The priest who performs the i l l e g a l marriage ceremony ultimately serves as arbit r a t o r between what amounts to two c o n f l i c t i n g i n t e r p r e t a - tions of v i r t u e . When virtuous love c o n f l i c t s with f i l i a l submission and obedience to s o c i a l laws, one must refer to an order superior to that of society to determine which i s the more essential value: Je ne vois qu'ecueils et precipices: un mariage i l l e g a l d'un cote; l'affreux libertinage de 1'autre: car je suis homme, et je ne vous proposerai pas l e moyen cruel de renoncer a votre amour.... De deux maux choisissons l e moindre . . . violons une l o i sage f a i t e par les hommes, plutot que de donner atteinte a l ' e t e r n e l l e l o i de l a raison et de l a nature. ( I I , 64-65) In the case of c o n f l i c t i n g allegiances, the ultimate standard for judging conduct i s i t s harmony with the laws of nature, which are discovered through the exercise of reason. In the case of D'Azinval and Laurence, reason dictates the construction of a love relationship that exists outside of, but p a r a l l e l t o, the world of pure v i r t u e . Their union i s based on a sense of so c i a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and tends toward the founding of a family. Thus, on the l e v e l of motivation, i t would seem that the revolt of the lovers i s j u s t i f i e d . I f such i s the conclusion we must draw, i t i s a lesson 65 p o t e n t i a l l y dangerous to the i n t e g r i t y of the world of v i r t u e . The admission of reason and the rights of nature as guides to determining t r u l y virtuous conduct could encourage a tendency to redefine virtue i n order to j u s t i f y any a n t i s o c i a l i n c l i n a - t i o n , or lead to the r e a l i z a t i o n that the d e f i n i t i o n of virtue 17 i s a r b i t r a r y . The narrator hastens to counter these possible effects of his story and bring his reader back to the idea that unquestioning adherence to the dictates of pure virtue i s the surest way to happiness. In the "Preface necessaire," the reader has already been warned at length against interpreting the experience of D'Azinval and Laurence as advocacy of independent interpretations of v i r t u e : Son respect pour les moeurs 1'oblige [l'auteur^ de prevenir sur l e s discours et l a conduite des personnages q u ' i l met en action, s i les conjonctures dans lesquelles i l s se trouvent les portent soi t a des actions peu regulieres, soit a debiter des paradoxes, qu'ils croient des v ^ r i t e s demontr^es. Dans cet ouvrage, 1'enthousiasme de 1'amour f a i t quelquefois agir et penser D'Azinval d'une maniere reprehensible; quoiqu'au premier coup d ' o e i l , i l paraisse n'avoir ecoute que l a voix de l a nature et meme de l a raison. II aime avec autant de v i o - lence que de delicatesse; mais sa passion n'est pas innocente; e l l e a des suites funestes pour l u i , et pour l a tendre et trop imprudente f i l l e qui en est l'objet. Ce n'est pas assez pour une femme, d'avoir l'ame honnete et pure; d'etre tendre, sincere, douce, constante, soumise a son epoux, i l faut qu'elle so i t entree dans l'etat saint du mariage, par l a porte que nous ouvrent l e s l o i x : une f i l l e , qui s'est donnee comme Laurence, est, a. l a v e r i t e , bien au-dessus des l i b e r t i n e s ; mais sa place est autant au-dessous des epouses avouees, que l a societe a vu s'unir solennellement a l'un de ses membres. These p o t e n t i a l i t i e s of reason are to be kept i n mind, for they w i l l become central to'Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . 66 D'Azinval et Laurence sont coupables: l e premier ne merite son bonheur, qu'apres avoir donne des preuves de l a bonte de son coeur, par un acte d'humanite . . . ( I , 4-5) Elements of structure support this r e c t i f i c a t i o n of the significance of the story of D'Azinval and Laurence. The a f f i r - mation that a love relationship, however virtuous, cannot survive without the stamp of public approval i s supported by the material fact of the culmination of that love i n despair and death. D'Azinval's past i s further placed i n the conven- t i o n a l moral perspective by events that have taken place since the d i s a s t e r . It has been hinted that D'..Azinval' s adoption of Marion i s an expiatory act, a t a c i t admission of g u i l t , that atones d i r e c t l y for past f a u l t s . His conduct toward Marion shows him to be fundamentally a worthy husband and father. What could be a more suitable reward for this worthiness than the discovery that the role he has adopted i s his natural r o l e , or almost? He ultimately plays the husband part of this role opposite a friend of Marion, who i s i d e n t i c a l to his daughter i n charm and v i r t u e . Thus, as far as D'Azinval i s concerned, pure virtue i s superior to equivocal virtue as a source of happiness. The f i n a l ambiguity, the impurity of his mother's att i t u d e , i s eliminated as w e l l . She i s f i n a l l y forced to recognize that her persecution of the lovers was based on a mistake and on misguided a f f e c t i o n for her son. In the end, then, a l l attitudes and actions are put back into t h e i r proper moral perspective, and we cannot accuse our author of having written a too-human and perhaps a n t i - s o c i a l novel — or can we? 67 La F i l l e naturelle imposes a question similar to that raised hy the denouement of La Confidence necessaire: does the outcome counter as e f f e c t i v e l y for the reader as for the characters the subversive implications of their experiments with morality? We are not convinced, i n f a c t , that happiness has been shown to depend upon the individual's s t r i c t adherence to s o c i a l values, because the dynamic role of the hero's per- sonality ch a r a c t e r i s t i c of the internal sentimental plot i s again not maintained to the end of the novel. D'Azinval's r e c a l c i t r a n t nature i s not d i r e c t l y responsible for the cata- strophe that provokes his unhappiness and reform, nor i s his return to virtue uniquely responsible for the s p e c i f i c happiness he ultimately enjoys. In other words, La F i l l e naturelle resembles the other novels we have studied i n that the causes of the hero's ultimate enjoyment of virtuous happiness are s t i l l constituted by events unrelated to the hero's morality. The unhappiness of D'Azinval and Laurence does not come from the i r own disorder, nor from the reaction of an outraged, righteous society, but rather from unjust parental persecution based on neither respect for virtue nor interest i n the hero's happiness. The lovers are thus punished, not for lack of v i r t u e , but simply for having sentiments contrary to those of a person i n a position of authority. The optimistic outcome of the novel i s a r t i f i c i a l as w e ll, and even more so than i n the La Confidence necessaire. Virtue does not cause happiness any more than does immorality cause unhappiness. D*Azinval's discovery of a reincarnation of his 68 mistress i n his daughter i s too extravagant a coincidence to valoriz e his new v i r t u e . In comparison, the reversal of the disaster that makes the happiness suit the reform i n La Con- fidence necessaire i s downright persuasive. The optimism of the conclusion furthermore obscures the undeniable fact that although the lovers' flawed virtue may have been at least an ind i r e c t cause of their unhappiness, they would probably not have been happy had they been virtuous. It i s therefore d i f f i c u l t to maintain, the preface not- withstanding, that the c o n f l i c t i n La F i l l e naturelle demonstrates moral nec e s s i t i e s . Even the narrator lamely concludes, "L'union refgne enfin entre ceux que l e malheur separa, que l e s chagrins rongerent, que 1'injustice poursuivit." ( I I , 202) The fact that the attitudes and actions of the characters would f i t uneasily into a superimposed pattern of causality between virtue and happiness makes this the only conclusion possible. By extension, we may conclude that human r e a l i t i e s , i f l e f t to themselves, do not contribute to this determinism. In the novels that immedi- ately follow La F i l l e n a turelle, these human r e a l i t i e s w i l l not be l e f t to themselves, nor w i l l fate be r e l i e d upon to do the work of the moral educator. In this stage of his a r t , Restif does not pursue the evolution of his moral novel from a l l e g o r i c a l i l l u s t r a t i o n to experiment. The revolt of his internal sentimental characters, who i n La Confidence necessaire and La F i l l e naturelle have threatened to create a happiness of their own, instead of contenting themselves with i l l u s t r a t i n g an a. p r i o r i conception 69 of s t r i c t l y moral happiness, i s put down. We w i l l not see a morally creative character pursue the advantage gained by D'Azinval and Laurence before the appearance of Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . The deterministic moral and f i c t i o n a l e d i f i c e i s battered but s t i l l standing, and w i l l be shored up by a return to the attempt to eliminate ambiguities i n external sentimental plots spiced up by adventure p l o t s . We w i l l not, therefore, discuss i n d e t a i l the novels separating La F i l l e naturelle and Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , for they do not offer any new inter p r e t a - tions of the relationship of morality to happiness. We w i l l content ourselves with selecting aspects of these novels that complete the Restivian conception of a world governed by v i r t u e , p a r t i c u l a r l y concerning i t s theoretical bases and active methods of self-preservation. As Porter points out, the remainder of the novels that precede Le Paysan perverti are concerned with various aspects of moral education, "as i f R e s t i f were going about a systematic review of a virtuous family to show how a father should t r a i n his son (Le Marquis de T S X 3 £ ) ; how a daughter should confide i n her father (Lettres d'une f i l l e a son pere); how a wife should treat her fiance,, husband, and family (La Femme dans l e s t r o i s etats de f i l l e , d'epouse 18 et de mere) . . . " As we examine these novels the implica- tions of the preceding f i c t i o n w i l l be confirmed: i n the world of virtue the i l l u s i o n that nature determines morality determines happiness i s created by a structure i n which the reverse Op. c i t (above, note l ) , p. 69. 70 o p e r a t e s ; s o c i a l l y d e f i n e d h a p p i n e s s determines m o r a l i t y determines n a t u r e . We read R e s t i f 1 s n e x t n o v e l , Le Marquis de T , ou l ' E c o l e de l a .jeunesse (1771), as a supplement t o the guided m o r a l - s e n t i m e n t a l e d u c a t i o n themes of t.r.o La F a m i l l e v e r t u e u s e , L u c i l e , and La C o n f i d e n c e n e c e s s a i r e , a l t h o u g h R e s t i f h i m s e l f proposed t h i s n o v e l as a supplement to Rousseau's E m i l e . I n h i s i n t r o d u c t i o n t o Le Marquis de T , R e s t i f c r i t i c i z e s E m i l e f o r b e i n g too i d e a l i s t i c t o be o f r e a l use t o the edu- c a t o r : "(RousseauJ suppose j l ' e l e v e j t o u j o u r s d o c i l e , r a i s o n n a b l e , guide par un homme sage, q u i ne se dement j a m a i s . " R e s t i f s e t s out t o compensate f o r t h e s e shortcomings by p r o v i d i n g a more r e a l i s t i c model f o r the moral e d u c a t o r : "Pour moi, j ' e n t r e p r e n d s de r e t r a c e r dans ces Memoires, l a c o n d u i t e que t i n r e n t de r a i s o n n a b l e s P a r e n t s , pour ramener a. l a v e r t u un F i l s c h e r i , q u ' i l s a v a i e n t perdu de vue, e t q u i s'egara sous 19 des conducteurs m e r c e n a i r e s . " As R e s t i f ' s e x p r e s s i o n of the theme of Le Marquis de T s u g g e s t s , t h i s n o v e l e n l a r g e s upon the r o l e of s o c i e t y , or o f the f a m i l y , as the r e a l hero of a f i c t i o n a l w o r l d i n which v i r t u e determines h a p p i n e s s . I t does so by i n t e n s i f y i n g the c o n f l i c t between the main c h a r a c t e r and h i s c o n t e x t . L i k e S i r B l a k e r and A u s t i n , the Marquis de T tends t o i n d u l g e h i s p a s s i o n s a b i t too f r e e l y , o r , as the n a r r a t o r puts i t , " I I Le Marquis de T ou l ' E c o l e de l a jeunesse (Londres e t P a r i s : Plumblot, 177l7 I , 22. 71 f u t extreme dans ses g o u t s ; devore par l a s o i f des p l a i s i r s , i l i g n o r a i t l e grand a r t de n'en prendre que l a f l e u r , de l e s v a r i e r , et s u r t o u t de l e s c h o i s i r . " ( I , 59) U n l i k e h i s p r e - d e c e s s o r s , however, the Marquis i s not a t a l l d i s p o s e d t o l o v e the v i r t u o u s g i r l h i s p a r e n t s have chosen f o r him. The c o n f l i c t i s thus not h a l f - r e s o l v e d b e f o r e i t b e g i n s , as i t has been i n p r e c e d i n g .external s e n t i m e n t a l plots.. S i n c e r e s i s t a n c e t o the d e t e r m i n i s m of the w o r l d o f v i r t u e i s more s y s t e m a t i c , the hero's c o n t e x t i s o b l i g e d t o put f o r t h e x t r a e f f o r t i n o r d e r t o f o r c e h i s commitment t o v i r t u o u s h a p p i n e s s . The p r i n c i p l e s of the M a rquis' m o r a l - s e n t i m e n t a l e d u c a t i o n a r e s i m p l e . H i s p a r e n t s e x e r c i s e an i n v i s i b l e ( t o the hero) a u t h o r i t a r i a n i s m , r e c a l l i n g t h a t of A u s t i n ' s f a m i l y , t h a t makes i t i m p o s s i b l e f o r the Marquis t o be a n y t h i n g o t h e r than v i r t u o u s and s t i l l be happy. They p l a c e the o b j e c t s of the M a rquis' p a s s i o n out of h i s r e a c h , so t h a t he i s c o n t i n u a l l y f r u s t r a t e d u n t i l he t u r n s h i s amorous a t t e n t i o n s t o the r i g h t o b j e c t . I n a n u t s h e l l , " j l e pere du MarquisJ p r i t tous l e s moyens p o s s i b l e s de p r e v e n i r l e mal, sans l e d e f e n d r e . " ( I , 173) I t i s o f prime importance t h a t t h i s a u t h o r i t a r i a n i s m be i n v i s i b l e , f o r as the M a r quis' f a t h e r e x p l a i n s t o h i s w i f e , H e n r i e t t e , a t o o - o b v i o u s e x e r c i s e of a u t h o r i t y might provoke h y p o c r i s y i n t h e i r son. The o n l y i n f l u e n c e t h a t s h o u l d be r e g u l a r l y p e r c e i v e d by the Marquis i s t h a t o f tenderness and good example: En u s a n t de t o u t e mon a u t o r i t e , d i s a i t - i l a H e n r i e t t e , j e n'en f e r a i qu'un h y p o c r i t e , q u i a j o u t e r a a. ses a u t r e s d e s o r d r e s , l a h a i n e envers son p e r e : s i vos exemples, ceux que monsieur de V s et moi nous e f f o r c o n s de l u i donner, s i l e s e l o g e s que t o u t e s bouches f o n t i c i de l a v e r t u , 72 d'autant plus propres a. produire leur effet qu'ils riont point l ' a i r du reproche; s i tout cela jusqu 1  a present a. g l i s s e sur son coeur, qu'opereront les severes reprimandes, les punitions revoltantes? (I , 101) Nevertheless, direct exercise of parental authority i s sometimes necessary, and i t i s a l l the more effective i f i t i s applied ju d i c i o u s l y . If the method of ind i r e c t influence f a i l s , instructs the narrator, tonnez al o r s ; servez-vous de votre autorite: ces grands coups ne doivent frapper qu'une ou deux f o i s dans l a v i e . Vos enfants, accoutuines a etre caresses, seront atterres d'un regard foudroyant: mais i l faut n'avoir ete que tendre, et non pas f a m i l i e r ; s'etre f a i t c h e r i r , aimer, et non pas s'etre a v i l i . ( I I , 62) In other words, parental intervention should seem to the c h i l d to be the word of God, as i t does to the Marquis when his father reproaches him vigorously on two occasions, once for dueling and once for seducing a married woman. As the narrator describes the Marquis' reaction, "Un homme qui vo i t tomber l a foudre sur l'arbre q u ' i l designait deja. pour se garantir de l'orage, est moins surpris et moins epouvante que l e Marquis, en entendant l a voix de son pere: ce reproche sanglant fut un t r a i t de lumlere qui penetra son ame: i l ne put r e s i s t e r . " ( I , 127) Ultimately, then, the moral-sentimental education ini^this novel develops the implications of l a Famille vertueuse and La Confidence necessaire that the education process creates an i l l u s o r y empirical si t u a t i o n for the benefit of the ind i v i d u a l to be educated. In this we can see an echo of Rousseau, i n spite of Restif's prefatory claims to o r i g i n a l i t y . The education 73 process i s empirical i n the sense that the individual discovers through experience the immutable moral laws to which his happiness i s subject. We have had several occasions to note, however, that this method i s s c i e n t i f i c from the point of view of the hero only; i t i s used to make him discover what the other characters want him to discover. To continue the comparison with Rousseau, i t i s evident that i n Restif this s o c i a l conditioning of the individual i s far less persuasive to the reader, hence i t i s even less p r a c t i c a l , than i n Emile, i n spite of our author's ambitions — or perhaps because of these ambitions. If Rousseau's theories on education are i d e a l i s t i c , they at least have the merit of recognizing that such conditioning can only work i f applied from b i r t h . R e s t i f , on the other hand, i n his desire to be more p r a c t i c a l , naively attempts to apply the theory that human nature i s i n f i n i t e l y malleable to personalities that are already formed, with results even less edifying i n Le Marquis de T than i n the other novels we have studied. Le Marquis de T i s i n fact a more honest novel than the others, since these fine theories are actually shown — or discovered — to be i n e f f e c t i v e . The return to the perspective of the virtuous s o c i a l context, i n order to develop i t s role i n educating a main character whose passions are rather more active than i n the other external sentimental p l o t s , does l i t t l e to combat the implications of La Confidence necessaire and La F i l l e naturelle that passion i s an integral part of s e n s i b i l i t y . Unlike his predecessors, the Marquis r e s i s t s s o c i a l conditioning; 74 f r u s t r a t i o n of his passions and parental disapproval do not 20 s u f f i c e to make him give up his passional motivations. And i t i s not an experience of the destructiveness of his own passions that brings about his ultimate r e a l i z a t i o n that i l - legitimate love i s a devastating torrent, and that his true happiness l i e s i n an "amour honnete," which i s "modeste et timide; i l ressemble au ruisseau qui coule paisiblement entre deux rives qu'embellissent l a verdure et les f l e u r s . " ( I I , 7) The Marquis f i n a l l y c l a s s i f i e s his passions i n the category of vice following a frightening experience of the violence of other people's passions, which r e c a l l s the adventure plot of La Famille vertueuse. Unlike S i r Blaker, the Marquis draws conclusions from this experience. After seeing the degradation to which his passions could lead him, he returns chastened to the family f o l d , "haissant l e v i c e , se detestant lui-meme" ( I , 189), and marries the virtuous g i r l his parents have reserved for him. Inconclusive as this denouement may appear concerning the inherent relationship between one's own passions and his hap- piness, i t would seem that the question of the place of masculine sensuality i n moral happiness i s settled by Le Marquis de T t at least as regards this stage of Restif's f i c t i o n — the 20 In l a t e r novels, such as La Femme dans les t r o i s e' etats, Le nouvel Emile and Le nouvel Abeilard, Restif recognizes the importance of beginning s o c i a l conditioning early, when there i s no resistance, p a r t i c u l a r l y where women are concerned. The results are devastating f o r the novel aspect of these works, however (as r e a l c o n f l i c t has been devastating for the aspect of moral determinism), since by d e f i n i t i o n , c o n f l i c t i s e l i m i - nated. 75 question i s re-opened i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . In his next novel, Restif turns to the feminine side of the problem of moral-sentimental education. As a moral novel, Adele de Qom g3tg , Lettres d'une f i l l e b, son pere (1772) offers less c o n f l i c t than the Marquis, and this represents a l o g i c a l p a r a l l e l between theme and form. The reader w i l l have noted that a l l of the central characters who have f r e e l y indulged th e i r passions, who have given r i s e to sustained c o n f l i c t with th e i r s o c i a l contexts, have been men. The feminine characters, L u c i l e , Fanchette and Laurence, are, on the other hand, presented as victims of other people's passions, and their chastity i s never r e a l l y s a c r i f i c e d . This i s as i t should be, i f feminine characters are to be edifying, for the d e f i n i t i o n s of masculine and feminine virtue diverge on the issue of sexuality. Adele provides the theoretical j u s t i f i c a t i o n for the double standard of morality implied by this difference i n a c t i v i t y between Restif's masculine and feminine characters. Such a double standard i s based on the natural order, for i t derives from the assumption that there i s a difference between the moral capacities of men and women that corresponds to the difference i n thei r physical capacities. Feminine virtue i s by 21 The q u a l i f i c a t i o n "as a moral novel" i s necessary, for a l o t goes on i n this novel that has l i t t l e to do with the theme of feminine education. The theme i s complemented by one of the most complicated adventure plots to be found i n R e s t i f . V/e i n v i t e the interested reader to consult Porter's resume of the " t e r r i b l y complex plot" of Adele. (Op. c i t . , pp. 73-75) 76 d e f i n i t i o n chastity and innocence. Repentance and reform can never f u l l y repair a flaw i n feminine v i r t u e , for as'Adele's father points out, "Dans [les vues] de l a nature, les premices ne sont r i e n dans l'homme, parce que tout ce q u ' i l f a i t ne l a i s s e pas plus de traces que l e vaisseau qui sillonne l a surface de 1'onde: mais c'est l e contraire dans votre sexe; a i n s i l a differente maniere d'envisager ces choses est fondee sur l a raison, et non sur l e prejuge, comme quelques Femmes 22 osent l'avancer de nos jours." We may assume that Adele's father i s speaking of the physical traces l e f t by experiences with sensuality; but his remarks apply just as well to their moral e f f e c t s . Woman cannot be trusted with knowledge of passion, for i t i s to be feared that her moral f i b r e i s not strong enough to r e s i s t temptation. In the face of moral choices, "qui d i t vertu, d i t force, empire sur soi-meme, courage, resolution . . . " ( I l l , 373), and these are not considered 23 feminine q u a l i t i e s . Responsibility for protection of feminine innocence f a l l s , of course, to the stronger sex, and this i s another reason to be r e l a t i v e l y indulgent of masculine experience outside the world of v i r t u e . If the enemy of virtue i s known, more effective measures of defense can be taken. An expression of this mascu- l i n e prerogative i n R e s t i f s next novel enters into the s p i r i t Adele de Com Lettres d'une f i l l e a son pere (Paris: Edme, 1772), I I I , 23-24. 23 Ŵe have not had much evidence that these are masculine q u a l i t i e s either. The masculine characters have received a great deal of help i n r e s i s t i n g temptation i n these novels. o f A d e l e : " . . . vous [ l e s femmesj devez t o u t i g n o r e r ; et p e u t - e t r e nous e s t - i l avantageux de t o u t s a v o i r : n o t r e e x p e r i e n c e et v o t r e innocence sont egalement n e c e s s a i r e s . . . t e l l e e s t l a Nature Given t h i s m a s c u l i n e monopoly on e x p e r i e n c e , the moral c o n f l i c t i n A d e l e , such as t h e r e i s , does not a r i s e from an unbecoming penchant f o r p l e a s u r e i n the h e r o i n e . On the con- t r a r y , the problem i n Adele i s an i n v e r s i o n of t h a t p r e s e n t e d by u n r u l y m a s c u l i n e p a s s i o n s . Whereas our ma s c u l i n e heroes have had t o be c o o l e d down, Ad e l e has t o be warmed up. Her f a t h e r has p l a y e d h i s r o l e as p r o t e c t o r too w e l l . As the p r e f a c e t o the n o v e l has promised, he i s "un Pere t e n d r e , q u i se c o n d u i t avec sa F i l l e , de maniere q u ' e l l e ne p u i s s e v o i r dans l e monde, personne de p l u s v e r t u e u x , q u i 1'aime d'avan- ta g e ; personne q u ' e l l e p u i s s e r e g a r d e r comme p l u s digne d ' e t r e aime, d ' a v o i r s a c o n f i a n c e , de l ' e c l a i r e r . . . " (p. v i i ) A d e l e ' s h e a r t i s f i l l e d w i t h fond a d m i r a t i o n f o r h e r f a t h e r , t o the p o i n t t h a t she c o n s i d e r s the n e c e s s i t y of l o v i n g a s t r a n g e r , i n the way n e c e s s a r y t o ma r r i a g e , r e p u l s i v e and even u n n a t u r a l . I n a l e t t e r t o her b r o t h e r , she e x p l a i n s h e r r e l u c t a n c e t o marry the Comte d'Ol , the man her f a t h e r has chosen f o r h e r . The terms of the l e t t e r i n d i c a t e t h a t Adele i s a s o u l - s i s t e r t o Leonor of La F a m i l l e v e r t u e u s e , a l t h o u g h h e r a t t i t u d e s and the s o l u t i o n she proposes t o her dilemma a re a b i t more r a d i c a l than Leonor's: OA La Femme dans l e s t r o i s e t a t s de f i l l e , d'epouse et de mere~TLondres et P a r i s : de Hansy, 1773) I , 152. 78 Je hais l'amour: les sentiments de l a nature sont mille f o i s plus doux; i l s sont plus surs. Ail! mon Frere, pourquoi les l o i s s'opposent- elles? je serais ton epouse. Mon Pere et mon Frere sont les deux seuls homrrjgs parfai t s que je connaisse. Le Comte d'01 est trop impetueux; i l m'interesse peniblement; i l a trouble l a tranquiTlite dont je jouissais . . . Je voudrais quasi n'etre pas aimee. Ne pourrait-on se marier sans amour? . . . je voudrais que l'Epoux que j'aurais . . . ne m'inspirat qu'un gout t r a n q u i l l e , une tendre ainitie. ( I l l , 284-285) In short, Adele wants "un homme r a s s i s , un Wolmar." (IV, 24) As i f she had read the novels preceding her own story and digested t h e i r overt message, Adele considers passion dangerous. Such an attitude would seem to be the' l o g i c a l con- sequence of a moral education that cultivates the dominance of sentiment, of a tendency to consider the calm world of gentle affections representative of the natural order, and the only true source of happiness. Adele's father does not congratulate himself on the success of his daughter's education, however. As he expresses his misgivings, Croiriez-vous que je crains qu'Adele n'ait pas l'ame tendre! c'est-a-dire susceptible d'amour? . . . e l l e est portee a l'amitie . . . S i nous n'avions pas eu une Hortense, je m'applaudirais peut-etre de cette disposition; mais je tremble, lorsque je songe qu'elle fut l a base des vices de ma Bellesoeur. ( I l l , 289-290) The Hortense i n question i s at the source of much of the adventure action i n Adele. She i s one of the rare characters i n R estif's early novels who i s unredeemably wicked; and she i s wicked because she i s completely devoid of s e n s i b i l i t y . As we have had several occasions to note, s e n s i b i l i t y i s the indispensable predisposition upon which the effectiveness of 79 moral education depends; or, to use the metaphor of agriculture provided by this novel, " i l n'y a que les campagnes mortes, ou. r i e n ne c r o i t , dont [le cultivateurj ne puisse f a i r e usage." ( I , 36-37) Hortense i s just such a s t e r i l e subject, and Adele's father fears that his daughter may be another. Her excessive distaste for love may indicate that her virtue lacks the necessary foundation of s e n s i b i l i t y . Her sentiments are thus put to the t e s t , and they pass with f l y i n g colors. Adele i s subjected to the pressing advances of her fiance, whose success i s unequivocal — Adele becomes pregnant. The success of the enterprise as a test of her s e n s i b i l i t y i s thorough, for she confesses that she actually enjoyed the experience: " . . . dans cette malheureuse entreprise du Comte, je ne fus pas toujours insensible: un p l a i s i r dont je n'avais pas d'idee s u i v i t l a douleur; et....je l e confesse, depuis, je ne me l e suis pas rappele avec indifference: je me suis surprise a desirer l a vue du Comte . . . ( I V , 35-36) Adele's mixed reaction to her seduction by the Comte a s s d'Ol indicates that she has not, for a l l her enjoyment, renounced her commitment to other aspects of v i r t u e . She nearly dies of chagrin, i n f a c t , believing that her chastity i s beyond r e p a i r . Such i s not the case, however. Her doubts — and those of the reader — concerning the morality of her actions are dissipated by the revelation that she was actually married to her lover a l l along. What she had believed to be a mock marriage ceremony preceding the seduction scene turns out to have been the r e a l thing. 80 This tardy concession to more orthodox s o c i a l morality serves to 'underline the re a l implications of the glance at the other side of the coin of sensuality and s o c i a l morality offered by Adele. We may read this novel as the terminal point i n Rest i f ' s early novels of a progressive refinement of the d e f i n i - t i o n of the place of sensuality i n virtuous love. From pre- ceding novels, we have learned that passion i s permissible i n the world of v i r t u e , within well-defined l i m i t s ; i t has to be expressed i n the right way, at the right time, and toward the right person to be acceptable. In Adele, we learn that passion i s necessary to v i r t u e , as proof of s e n s i b i l i t y — but again within the same well-defined l i m i t s . As a r e s u l t , Adele completes a composite image of the situation of the early Restivian hero. His progress toward virtuous happiness involves walking the tightrope of s e n s i b i l i t y between excessive sensuality and excessive sentimentality, and his balance i s precarious. As we have seen, i t i s only maintained thanks to the support of v i g i l a n t and omnipotent parents and frie n d s , and sometimes of luck. We w i l l not be astonished to see, therefore, that when the support of s o c i a l context i s removed i n Le Paysan pe r v e r t i , the hero experiences considerable d i f f i c u l t y i n maintaining the proper equilibrium between the extreme i n c l i n - ations of his s e n s i b i l i t y . In spite of the inconvenient tendency of s e n s i b i l i t y to provoke excesses of sensuality or sentiment, the p o s s i b i l i t y of basing the a l l i a n c e between nature and s o c i a l morality on something more r e l i a b l e than s e n s i b i l i t y — on reason, for 81 example — i s not considered. The reader w i l l have noted the conspicuous absence of reason as motivation for consent to virtuous happiness i n these novels. Even for men, who are supposedly r e l a t i v e l y capable creatures, moral education has hardly involved learning to make judicious moral choices. In Adele we have evidence that the denial of a dominant role to reason i n the world of virtue i s not the result of an oversight, i t i s a matter of p r i n c i p l e . Anything resembling enlightened s e l f - i n t e r e s t , or ra t i o n a l commitment to virtue i n view of advantages to be gained, i s e x p l i c i t l y rejected by Adele's father on the grounds that such a virtue r i s k s being s e l e c t i v e . He does not consider the devotion of a minor character to his m i l i t a r y duty s u f f i c i e n t indication of funda- mental v i r t u e , for as he says, Je sais parfaitement qu'un egoxste ec l a i r e f a i t son devoir comme l e plus zele citoyen; c'est un des avantages de l a Societe de tourner, malgre eux, vers l e bien general, l ' i n t e r e t personnel de chacun de ses membres . . . A i n s i , toutes les bonnes qualites que j ' a i remarquees chez l e Gomte comme m i l i t a i r e , ne detruisent pas un seul de ses defauts comme citoyen et comme homme-du-monde. (I I , 2 4 3 ) • I f virtue i s not part of the individual's nature, as an emotional r e f l e x , i t i s not an absolute guide to behavior. The r a t i o n a l i n d i v i d u a l r i s k s deciding, i n f a c t , that i n some cases his interest l i e s i n a s o c i a l , i f not i n a n t i s o c i a l , behavior. As one character i n La Femme dans les t r o i s etats explains, " . . . une vue trop etendue donne un certain fond de.mepris pour tout ce que les autres hommes admirent, et f a i t negliger l e s choses necessaires a. l'agrement de l a vie 82 sociale . . . " ( I l l , 93) This i s nothing short of heresy, of course, for i t constitutes affirmation that natural and so c i a l requirements may c o n f l i c t . We r e c a l l that D'Azinval ° f £§. F i l l e naturelle i s of thi s opinion, and decides i n favor of nature. His experiment meets with disaster; which just goes to prove that reason, l i k e passion, can be bad not only for society, but for the individual as we l l . As we s h a l l see, the role of reason as an enemy of virtuous happiness i s further developed i n l e Paysah p e r v e r t i . Ultimately, then, the difference between masculine and feminine education, as regards experience of alternatives to v i r t u e , i s a difference of degree rather than of kind. What i s true for men i s even more true for women: virtue must be a conditioned r e f l e x , a second nature (or a prejuge, a term often used by the characters), rather than the result of ra t i o n a l choice. The l a s t novel we w i l l consider before turning to the much-foreshadowed Paysan perverti provides a f i t t i n g f i n a l e to this series of n o v e l s . ^ La Femme dans les t r o i s etats de In passing d i r e c t l y from La Femme dans les t r o i s etats to Le Paysan pe r v e r t i , we i n fact leave aside three novels. Two of them we do not consider r e a l l y R e s t i f s . Les Nouveaux Memoires d'un homme de qualite (1774) i s a continuation of a novel begun by Marchand, the censor of one of R e s t i f s other works, and Le Fin Matois (1775) i s a l i b e r a l translation of Quevedo's Gran Tacano. The third work, Le Menage parisien (1773)> presents a treatment of moral problems i n a vein Restif does not pursue. In this novel, Restif departs from his usual serious presentation of the attributes of morality to offer a comic inversion of his world of v i r t u e , i n a sati r e of the i n f i - d e l i t i e s of a Parisian wife and the stupidity of a husband who l e t s her get away with i t . R e s t i f himself repudiates the f i l l e , d'epouse et de mere (1773) looks beyond the happy endings of the other novels to offer a glimpse of the fates of the virtuous characters after marriage, and of the ways i n which t h i s generation of characters passes on i t s values to the next. The central couples i n La Femme dans les t r o i s etats are none other than those formed i n L u c i l e . Lucile and Durichemont return i n this novel as F e l i c i t e and De Combleval; Dangeot and Lucile's brother become Alexandrine Casellet and De Vorterre. To this group of old friends i s added a secondary couple also f a m i l i a r to us, Fanchette and De Lussanville. Before we turn to the continuing adventures of L u c i l e - F e l i c i t e and her friends, however, the v i c i s s i t u d e s of their period of courtship are recapiilfculated and embroidered upon i n the f i r s t part of the novel. The most interesting amplification concerns the relationship between F e l i c i t e and Casellet. The lesbian undertones of the love between the heroine and her father's clerk are more e x p l i c i t than i n L u c i l e . F e l i c i t e learns the true sex of her lover much sooner than Lucile — before she runs off with him, i n fact — and this revelation i s hardly occasion for disappointment or a change i n plans: " . . toutes deux se l i v r e r e n t ensuite aux plus doux epanchements de l'amitie." ( I , 14) When the two run off to Paris to escape the revolting marriage planned for F e l i c i t e by her parents, they present themselves as man and wife, "afin d'occuper l e meme irreverence of this novel when he writes, "Mon coeur n'eut aucune part a. cette composition; pas un t r a i t interessant; pas un t r a i t qui a i l l e a. 1'a.me . . . " (Monsieur Nicolas jParis: 'Pauvert, 1959] VI, 388). 84 apartement et l e meme l i t " . ( I , 25) Eventually, of course, F e l i c i t e and Alexandrine enter into more normal love relationships. F e l i c i t e marries De Combleval, who saves her from corruption, and Alexandrine marries F e l i c i t e ' s brother, whom she has met i n the course of a t r i p to America. Marriage changes l i t t l e i n the mutual af f e c t i o n of F e l i c i t e and Alexandrine, however; i n fact they prefer each other to their husbands. In the second part of the novel Alexandrine r e c a l l s their period as "lovers" with nostalgia: "Te souv i e n t - i l de mon deguisement? —On ne peut guereS. l ' o u b l i e r . —Ah! ma chere, que n'etais-je pour t o i ce que je paraissais! . . . " ( I I , 38) Indeed, the second part of the novel, entitled "L'epouse", j u s t i f i e s Alexandrine's implication that women make the best husbands. It also j u s t i f i e s Leonor's and Adele's preference for the greater s o l i d i t y and d u r a b i l i t y of f i l i a l r e l ationships. If De Combleval and De Vorterre are t y p i c a l , i t would seem that once the novelty of conjugal b l i s s has worn o f f , men have a tendency to revert to their o r i g i n a l i n c l i n a t i o n to indulge the i r passions indiscriminately; that i s , outside the l i m i t a - tions of time and place we have observed i n the other novels. Both F e l i c i t e and Alexandrine are a f f l i c t e d with unfaith- f u l husbands. Their i n f i d e l i t y i s caused by the very aspects of human nature we have seen so ca r e f u l l y directed i n the other novels. De Combleval i s led astray by a s e n s i b i l i t y that disposes him to sensuality, and De Vorterre, by an i n t e l l e c t that disposes him to ra t i o n a l i z e a n t i s o c i a l behavior. The narrator s a t i r i z e s De Vorterre's philosophical pretensions when he describes his personality as a mixture of cynicism, egotism, and f r i v o l i t y , and adds that " i l avait amalgame l e tout avec une forte dose d'epicurisme, pour rendre l a masse plus l i a n t e , et s'en forger un systeme de morale, auquel i l avait surajoute l e vernis de ce q u ' i l nommait sa philosophie." (I I , 12) The ways i n which F e l i c i t e and Alexandrine deal with the waywardness of th e i r spouses enlarge our conception of the feminine role i n preserving the orderliness of the world of v i r t u e . In F e l i c i t e we see the power a woman can wield under the cover of the innocence and submission prescribed by Adele. Indeed, when we compare the effects of F e l i c i t e ' s gentle methods with those of Alexandrine's more agressive techniques, we see that a woman's influence i s greatest when she does not depart from her subordinate r o l e . The methods F e l i c i t e and Alexandrine employ to reconquer t h e i r husbands accord with th e i r own personalities (as well as with their names) and with the personalities of their husbands In an image rather u n f l a t t e r i n g for men, Alexandrine j u s t i f i e s the contrasting means the two women employ to attai n the same end: "On apprivoise les animaux paisibles par l a douceur, par de bons traitements [ F e l i c i t e ' s method]; mais les betes feroce 25 De Vorterre furthermore encourages De Combleval to abandon his principles and indulge his sensuality. In this we may see yet another foreshadowing of Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , where the hero i s influenced by a character who resembles De Vorterre, although he i s presented i n much less s a t i r i c a l terms. 86 ne sont domptees que par l'affaiblissement, l a faim, les coups,; [Alexandrine's method}." ( I I , 36) Felicite's constant tenderness and respect for De Combleval eventually inspire i n him repentance and renewed esteem for his wife. Alexandrine's effo r t s to dominate and r i d i c u l e De Vorterre — at one point she nearly defeats him i n a duel — succeed i n wearing down his resistance. Although the two hus- bands are thus brought to heel, the tone of the r e c o n c i l i a t i o n scene indicates that De Combleval's remorse i s l i k e l y to have a more l a s t i n g effect than De .Vorterre's subjugation: De Combleval s'avance vers sa Femme, et se met a ses genoux: De Vorterre s'eerie: — A genoux! c'est bien f o r t ! allons done, puisq u ' i l l e faut — Et i l en met un en ter r e , f o r t lentement. — Ma divine Epouse, d i t alors De Combleval, f a i t e s graces a. mon repent i r . . . . F e l i c i t e l'interrompt par ses caresses, e l l e est dans ses bras; e l l e ne l u i permet pas d'articuler un mot. Pour Alexandrine, e l l e reste gravement debout, tandis que De Vorterre f a i t sa harangue: — Ma lut i n e Epouse, d i t c e l u i - c i , f a i t e s treve a, vos tours de farfadet; je me mets a l a merci de votre espieglerie, a f i n qu'elle me lu t i n e tant q u ' i l l u i p l a i r a de l u t i n e r , fusse pardela secula seculorum — . (I I , 146-147) The postscript to the second part of this novel further tempers the optimism of the denouement: Madame De Combleval. et surtout Madame De Vorterre, prient les Belles qui l i r o n t cet ouvrage, de ne pas s'imaginer qu'un Mari revenu de ses egarements soit comme un Mari tout neuf; c'est un vieux batiment reblanchi. un habit retourne, un mets rechauffe. etc., etc. II n'est r i e n t e l que les fle u r s du printemps, ce l l e s d'automne ont toujours quelquechose de sombre et de t r i s t e . ( I I , 202) Marriage brings disillusionment with one's spouse as well as with v i r t u e . When the motivation of love no longer e x i s t s , 87 the s a c r i f i c e s inherent i n commitment to virtue at l a s t become apparent. This i s not to say, according to the narrator, that conjugal f i d e l i t y cannot be a source of s a t i s f a c t i o n : " . . . l e v r a i bonheur n'est que dans l e mariage, et dans 1'attachement a. son Epouse: ce n'est plus l'amour de passion . . . ce sont des Maris contents de leurs Femmes, qu'ils estiment, qu'ils venerent, et qui l e meritent." ( I I , 201) This reassurance i s perhaps not s u f f i c i e n t to compensate for the pessimistic undertones of the second part of l a Femme dans les t r o i s etats. The disillusionment of F e l i c i t e and Alexandrine suggests that marriage i s not a universal solution to the problem of happiness, and this implication i s supported by a narrative that v i v i d l y underlines, sometimes humorously, the contrasting personalities of the main characters — without div i d i n g them into clear-cut categories of good and bad. This p e c u l i a r i t y of the narrative attests yet again to the existence of a r e a l i t y more complex than that acknowledged by the value system of the world of v i r t u e . People have a tendency to be individuals; but this i s not occasion to abandon the ideal of virtuous happiness on the grounds that i t does not correspond to human nature. On the contrary, F e l i c i t e ' s experience with human r e a l i t i e s results i n a renewed determination to take charge of those r e a l i t i e s . The third part of the novel deals with F e l i c i t e ' s role as mother. We see how she employs the methods of manipulation established by the other novels to f i x the varied temperaments of her children and of her friends' children i n a uniform 88 sentimental commitment to v i r t u e . This new generation seems more promising than the l a s t , for not only are the children a l l a l i k e i n the end, they are interchangeable. F e l i c i t e ' s son and his fiancee i l l u s t r a t e this ultimate triumph of moral- sentimental education. The young De Combleval has been brought up to love his cousin; but due to a change i n plans, he i s obliged to transfer his affections to another woman. As he explains to his new fiancee, this change w i l l not affect his happiness i n any way: . . . j'aimais, vous l e savez; j'aime encore, et jamais je n'en f e r a i mystere; mais, puissiez- vous l i r e dans mon coeur, et voi r les sentiments que vous y avez f a i t naitre! j'aurais ete heureux sans doute avec ma Cousine, non parce qu'elle est b e l l e , mais parce qu'elle a toutes les vertus de son sexe; vous les reunissez comme e l l e . . . ( I l l , 72) This attitude i s surely the most l o g i c a l , the most perfect result of a moral-sentimental education that has always striven to eliminate independent self-expression. The determinism of the world of virtue has had the l a s t word; but i n casting a backward glance over the t o t a l thematic implications of R e s t i f s early novels, i t becomes clear why they do not serve unequivocally the cause of so c i a l morality, i n spite'; of their optimistic s t o r i e s . Their optimistic v i s i o n that virtue i s the solution to the problem of happiness i n society presents, i n f a c t , a s t r i k i n g analogy (on a modest l e v e l , to be sure), with the situa t i o n of mid-century lumieres as described by Paul Hazard, whose comment could serve as an appropriate introduction to our study of Restif's novels: 89 Nous avons a v o i r . . . comment une doctrine s 1  est dissoute, non par 1 1  intervention d'ennemis exterieurs, mais de l ' i n t e r i e u r meme; comment des obscurites sont restees dans l a theorie qui paraissait l a plus c l a i r e , des contradictions dans l e systeme qui paraissait l e plus logique; comment une v i c t o i r e proclamee n'etait pourtant pas acquise; comment a l l a i t echouer, une f o i s de plus, un immense effort accompli pour atteindre l e bonheur humain.26 The novels we have studied exhibit a similar d u a l i t y . If. we consider only the evidence provided by the story l i n e s and direct statements of ideology, we can reconstruct a " l o g i c a l system" that apparently eliminates the c o n f l i c t between s o c i a l morality and human nature. Moral values are a function of a well-defined ( p r i n c i p a l l y according to sex) hierarchy of family 27 roles prescribed by the natural order. The s o c i a l system furthermore generously g r a t i f i e s the individual's natural s e n s i b i l i t y . To the esthetic and affective satisfactions pro- cured by the order and harmony of family relationships i s added the more concrete, personalized sentimental s a t i s f a c t i o n of possessing an attractive incarnation of virtue — at which time a concession i s even made to passion. Paul Hazard, La pensee europeenne au XVTII e  s i e c l e (Paris, 1963), p. 275. 27 Our choice of the word role i s not anachronistic use of modern so c i o l o g i c a l jargon. As proof, we take the l i b e r t y of c i t i n g La Vie de mon Pere out of sequence. In addressing his wife, the main character uses the term role to designate the point of convergence of the natural and s o c i a l orders: " . . . nous sommes des epoux muris, qui doivent agir serieusement et remplir chacun leur role dans toute son etendue. Ce n'est qu'en suivant l a nature qu'on peut etre heureux: l e role naturel du plus f o r t , c'est l e gouvernement; l e role naturel de l a plus f a i b l e , de l a plus aimable, c'est d 1  en temperer l a durete . . . Ma chere epouse, j ' a i resolu fermement de me conformer au voeu de l a nature: soyez douce; obtenez, et n'exigez pas." (La Viede mon.Pere (Paris: G-arnier, 1970], pp. 137-138) 90 If we had approached these novels from the point of view of ideological rather than a r t i s t i c structure we would have been able to reconstruct i n much greater d e t a i l the functioning of a Restivian world i n which the good of society i s the good 28 of the i n d i v i d u a l . The essential aspects of this world, as outlined above, have of course been perceptible i n the action of the novels; and i t i s this same,action that has forbidden our reading the novels as simply i l l u s t r a t i o n of an ideological system. If we had done so we would have missed hal f of their implications. We have read R e s t i f s novels as a r t , i n the sense defined by Rousset: "L'oeuvre est done pour 1'artiste un instrument p r i v i l e g i e de decouverte. Guide, ordonne, modele par l'oeuvre q u ' i l compose, c'est a travers e l l e que l e poete se decouvre poete . . . Qu'il l e sache ou q u ' i l 1'ignore . . . tout a r t i s t e porte en l u i un secret que l a creation a pour but de l u i reve- 29 Ier." We have no evidence that Restif used the f i c t i o n a l form as an instrument of discovery as consciously as did Diderot, whom Ronald Grimsley evokes as "un savant qui f a i t dans l a solitude de son laboratoire une experience dont lui-meme ignore 30 l e r e s u l t a t . " ^ Restif was at least aware of the d i f f i c u l t y of po The value system of R e s t i f s f i c t i o n a l worlds of virtue i s analogous to the one he develops i n his theoretical works, such as 1'Andrographe and Le Gynographe. A study of R e s t i f s i d e a l s o c i a l order i s offered by Mark Poster's The Utopian Thought of Restif de l a Bretonne (New York, 1971). pq Jean Rousset, Forme et S i g n i f i c a t i o n (Paris, 1962), p. i x . Ronald Grimsley, "L'Ambiguite dans l'oeuvre romanesque de Diderot", Association internationale des etudes frangaises, Cahiers, 13 (1961), 228. 91 incorporating preconceived ideas i n f i c t i o n a l action. As he points out i n La Femme dans les t r o i s etats. Ce n'est pas q u ' i l ne so i t u t i l e , necessaire de moraliser; mais i l faut l e f a i r e sans ennuyer. Pour c e l a , je vois deux moyens; l e premier, de presenter des f a i t s moraux par eux-m§mes; i l n'est pas toujours f a c i l e d'en avoir de t e l s : l e second, de l a i s s e r l e lecteur maitre d'enjamber une morale qu'on l u i donne reunie sous une etiquette qui I'avertisse. J'ai s u i v i les deux routes . . . ( I , 136-37) The notion that moralizing i s frequently separable from the f i c t i o n a l action, and may even be inapplicable to i t , i s j u s t i - f i e d by the novels we have studied. Grimsley's conclusions concerning the effect of the f i c t i o n a l form on morality i n Diderot apply admirably to Restif's early novels: " . . . ces protestations morales ne sont pas toujours assez puissantes pour exorciser les s i n i s t r e s fantomes evoques sous l a dictee 31 d'une in s p i r a t i o n plus a f f e c t i v e . " As we suggested i n the introduction to this chapter, i t i s primarily the plots that add the element of discovery to the pre-Paysan novels. Whereas the s t o r i e s , or the sequences of events, i l l u s t r a t e the smooth functioning of a system i n which happiness i s a function of v i r t u e , the p l o t s , or the how and why of these events, explore the functioning of such a world. It i s this exploratory tendency of plot that has subverted the world of virtue from within, and has forced us to judge i t as a r t i f i c i a l . I f , unlike the characters, we do not mistake the moral structure of these novels for the r e a l i t y i t organizes, i t i s not just due to a prejudice similar to that of a character Op. c i t . (above, note 30), p. 231. 92 i n A d e l e who s a y s , "Tout l e monde e s t s i p l a t o n i c j u e i c i , q u ' i l f a u t b i e n c h e r c h e r audehors q u e l q u ' e t r e q u i s o i t un peu du p a r t i d ' E p i c u r e — " ( I I , 1 7 5 ) Each of the t h r e e p l o t s experimented w i t h i n t h i s s e r i e s of n o v e l s has r e v e a l e d e s s e n t i a l l y the same " s e c r e t " c o n c e r n i n g th e r e l a t i o n s h i p between m o r a l i t y and h a p p i n e s s . They have each d i s c o v e r e d the worm i n the f r u i t of the o p t i m i s t i c d o c t r i n e t h a t v i r t u e i s n e c e s s a r i l y a source o f happ i n e s s because i t s a t i s f i e s n a t u r e ; the r e c a l c i t r a n t element i s n a t u r e i t s e l f . The e x t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l and adventure p l o t s have i m p l i e d t h i s i n t h e i r r e l i a n c e on the i n t e r v e n t i o n of s o c i a l c o n t e x t and c o i n c i d e n c e t o c o n d i t i o n the i n d i v i d u a l ' s n a t u r a l s e n s i b i l i t y so t h a t i t r e q u i r e s the p r e c i s e c o m b i n a t i o n of s e n t i m e n t a l and p a s s i o n a l s a t i s f a c t i o n s o f f e r e d by s o c i e t y . T h i s i m p l i c a t i o n t h a t the l i n k between human n a t u r e , m o r a l i t y , and happiness i s not p u r e l y n a t u r a l , but r a t h e r an i n t e l l e c t u a l c o n s t r u c t i o n based on a h i g h l y s e l e c t i v e and p r e c a r i o u s d e f i n i t i o n of human n a t u r e , has been made e x p l i c i t by the i n t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l p l o t s . The f o c u s of these p l o t s on the r o l e of the i n d i v i d u a l i n t he n a t u r e - s o c i e t y c o n f l i c t has r e v e a l e d t h a t when s e n s i b i l i t y i s a l l o w e d t o d e v e l o p f r e e l y , i t s p a s s i o n a l a s p e c t i s l i k e l y t o dominate i t s s e n t i m e n t a l a s p e c t . N a t u r a l s e n s i b i l i t y i s thus more l i k e l y t o i s o l a t e the i n d i v i d u a l from s o c i e t y , and from s o c i a l l y d e f i n e d h a p p i n e s s , than to harmonize i n d i v i d u a l and s o c i a l i n t e r e s t s . I t i s t h i s v i s i o n of. man and s o c i e t y t h a t w i l l be developed i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , R e s t i f ' s f i r s t " r e a l i s t i c " n o v e l . 93 The early novels thus permit us to c l a s s i f y R e s t i f among the more l u c i d moralists, i n the sense defined by Mauzi: Les plus naifs parlent d'etre heureux "selon l a nature et selon l a vertu", sans se douter qu'ils enoncent une absurdite et que les deux termes sont contradictoires. Seuls les plus lucides — Rousseau et Diderot sont de ceux-la — savent bien que l a vertu consiste non pas a suivre l a nature, mais a l u i resister.32 The fact that R e s t i f indicates i n his novels an awareness of a basic opposition between nature and virtue does not necessarily imply, however, that i n writing s u p e r f i c i a l l y optimistic moral stories he was just off-handedly adopting moral and esthetic idees recues i n order to impose his works on the market. I f we wish, we can apply to the positive aspect of the novels our argument that art i s discovery, and conclude that i n developing i n such d e t a i l a world governed by virtue Restif "discovered" i n himself a penchant for such a world. His novels imply i n him a b e l i e f that conformity to s o c i a l morality i s the surest way to happiness, and a recognition that a r i g i d channeling of nature i s necessary i f such happiness i s to be attained. This d e f i n i t i o n of Restif as implied author i s supported by Le Paysan pe r v e r t i , as we s h a l l see i n our study of this novel's amplification of the underlying pessimism of the non-autobio- graphical novels. Robert Mauzi, L 1 Idee du bonheur dans l a l i t t e r a t u r e et l a pensee francaises au XVIII e  s i e c l e (Paris, I960), p. 78. CHAPTER II LE PAYSAN PERVERTI, OU LES DANGERS DE LA VILLE Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , published i n 1775, i s the f r u i t of a "germ" that was planted early i n R e s t i f s l i t e r a r y career, when he returned to his childhood home to compose La Confidence necessaire. After having found a s o l i t a r y place i n which to work, he confides i n Monsieur Nicolas, . . . mon imagination eparpillee au grand a i r . . . par les s i t e s cheriso de mon enfance, ne put jamais se r e c u e i l l i r assez pour produire. Je me rappelai seulement que j'avais garde un jour l e s moutons dans cet endroit avec ma soeur infortunee Genevieve . . . et je m'attendris, en me rappelant ces temps de ma jeunesse, ou nous etions innocents, ma soeur et moi. Je versai des larmes ameres, qui furent l e premier germe du Paysan perverti . . . 1 The extensive use of his own experiences as a displaced peasant i n Auxerre and Paris as the basis for a novel i s new 2 i n R e s t i f . The innovation was well received by contemporary readers, who found the book fascinating and moving, i n spite of i t s shockingly crude portrayals of sexual mores. After pointing out that the qu a l i t i e s of Le Paysan perverti caused the work to be attributed to Diderot and Beaumarchais, the author of the review a r t i c l e i n the Correspondance l i t t e r a i r e goes on to enumerate i t s merits and shortcomings: Plein d'invraisemblances, de mauvais gout, souvent du plus mauvais ton, ce l i v r e promene 1'esprit sur les scenes de l a vie les plus v i l e s , les plus degoutantes, et cependant i l attache, i l entraine. ^-Paris: Pauvert, 1959, I I I , 558. See Charles Porter, R e s t i f s Novels (New Haven and London, 1967), Chapter I I I , for a discussion of the relationship between the events of Le Paysan perverti and the author's l i f e . 95 On peut l e jeter avec indignation apres en avoir l u quelques pages, mais, s i l a curiosite l'emporte sur ce premier mouvement, on continue a l e l i r e , on s'y interesse, i l n'y a plus moyen de s'en depetrer, i l faut l e f i n i r . 3 The success of Le Paysan perverti encouraged Restif to re-edit the book i n 1776, 1780, and 1782, and to publish a supplement, La Paysanne pervertie (1780-83), as well as a combined Paysan- Paysanne pervertis (1784-87).^ The favorable reception accorded Le Paysan pe r v e r t i , and the frank portrayals of moral degradation that constitute a large part of the narrative, do not, however, cause us to consider this novel a complete revolution i n R e s t i f s a r t . The change from bookish to personal i n s p i r a t i o n adds, rather, a new facet to Restif's f i c t i o n a l exploration of the relationship between human nature, morality, and•happiness. Le Paysan perverti develops e x p l i c i t l y the v i s i o n of an ambiguous r e l a - tionship between human nature and s o c i a l morality that i s latent i n the e a r l i e r novels; and the f i c t i o n a l structure that gives r i s e to this v i s i o n also has roots i n the early f i c t i o n . It i s as i f our author's experiments with n o v e l i s t i c techniques i n the pre-Paysan novels had taught him that "certain techniques are sharper tools than others, and w i l l discover more . . . the writer capable of the most exacting technical scrutiny of his subject matter w i l l produce works with thickness and resonance, ^Grimm et a l . , Correspondance l i t t e r a i r e , philosophique et cr i t i q u e (Paris: Garnier, 1879), XI, 160. "̂We base our analysis on the edition of 1775, although we w i l l have occasion to refer to l a t e r versions of the novel for s i g n i f i c a n t variations or thematic amplifications. works with maximum meaning." In Le Paysan perverti Restif pursues his scrutiny of the c o n f l i c t between individual and s o c i a l values more exactingly than he did i n the e a r l i e r novels by placing a hero with the same temperament and objectives as his predecessors i n a sustained internal sentimental p l o t , and by improving upon his use of the epistolary form. Edmond R , the hero of Le Paysan pe r v e r t i , resembles his counterparts i n the e a r l i e r novels i n that he i s generously endowed with s e n s i b i l i t y , and he seeks an answer to the question, does natural s e n s i b i l i t y dispose us to commit ourselves to s o c i a l or to asocial sources of happiness? For Edmond, however, the question i s much less easy to answer than i t i s for the pre-Paysan heroes. When Edmond's honest, hardworking peasant family sends him off to town to learn the art of painting, he becomes the hero of an internal sentimental p l o t . As i n La Confidence necessaire and La F i l l e n a t u r e l l e , a first-person narrative focuses on the independent development of the hero's s e n s i b i l i t y , rather than on the efforts of a s o c i a l context or coincidence to shape his s e n s i b i l i t y into commitment to v i r t u e . And as i n the other internal sentimental p l o t s , this focus on the hero's s e n s i b i l i t y as the agent of the action reveals that s e n s i b i l i t y poses a much greater id e n t i t y problem that that acknowledged by the focus of the other pl o t s . The narrative develops the hero's s e n s i b i l i t y as a predisposition to vi r t u e ; 5 Mark Schorer, "Technique as Discovery," i n Approaches to the Novel, ed. Robert Scholes (San Francisco, 196b), pp. 1A1'=1A2. 9 7 and i t a l s o d e v e l o p s the a c t i v i t y of the p a s s i o n a l a s p e c t of s e n s i b i l i t y as h i n d r a n c e t o such a commitment. P a s s i o n i s n e i t h e r kept i n the background as the vague s i n o f a r e c a l c i - t r a n t c e n t r a l c h a r a c t e r , nor brought i n as an o u t s i d e agent of v i o l e n t d e s t r u c t i o n when a c t i o n i s needed, as i t i s i n the e x t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l and adventure p l o t s ; i t i s a p o s i t i v e and dynamic a s p e c t o f the hero h i m s e l f . The s t r u c t u r e o f l e Paysan p e r v e r t i t h e r e f o r e resembles most c l o s e l y t h a t of La Confidence n e c e s s a i r e and La F i l l e n a t u r e l l e ; but Edmond's m o r a l - s e n t i m e n t a l e d u c a t i o n i s f a r from b e i n g a carbon copy of t h a t of A u s t i n and D ' A z i n v a l . I n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i the f o c u s of the i n t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l p l o t on the ambiguous r o l e of s e n s i b i l i t y i n r e l a t i n g the i n d i v i d u a l t o s o c i a l m o r a l i t y i s sharpened. Edmond's e x p e r i e n c e of the c o n t r a d i c t o r y i n c l i n a t i o n s of h i s temperament i s developed a t g r e a t e r l e n g t h , because u n l i k e A u s t i n and D ' A z i n v a l , he must r e s o l v e the c o n f l i c t h i m s e l f . No d e v i c e s of the e x t e r n a l s e n t i m e n t a l and adventure p l o t s i n t e r v e n e t h i s time t o t i p the b a l a n c e i n f a v o r of s e n t i m e n t a l i t y , thus a i d i n g Edmond t o d i s c o v e r h i s e s s e n t i a l l y s o c i a l i d e n t i t y . On the c o n t r a r y , Edmond l i v e s i n a w o r l d t h a t keeps the c o n f l i c t a c t i v e by en c o u r a g i n g e x p r e s s i o n of each of h i s opposing d i s p o s i t i o n s . As a r e s u l t , the shape of the a c t i o n i n t h i s n o v e l i s d i f f e r e n t from the one we have observed i n the e a r l i e r n a r r a t i v e s . We r e c a l l t h a t the c o n v e r g i n g p r e s s u r e s of s o c i e t y and c o i n c i d e n c e t y p i c a l l y provoke a s i m p l e movement away from, then toward s o c i a l c o n f o r m i t y , i n the e a r l i e r f i c t i o n . I n c o n t r a s t , Edmond's 9 8 moral sentimental education acquires a see-saw movement. It i s characterized by a series of commitments to one or the other of his passional and sentimental i n c l i n a t i o n s , followed by immediate rejection of the identity his choices confer upon him. The c o n f l i c t i s eventually resolved, of course, and i n a manner entirely i n keeping with the nature of a plot that makes the v a c i l l a t i n g temperament of the hero the determining factor i n the action. Edmond learns very early i n his career that his passions cannot make him happy, but this r e a l i z a t i o n does not influence his acts, to the point of becoming a positive commitment to his sentiments, u n t i l his passions cause a series of unmistakeable and i r r e v e r s i b l e disasters, and even then, he does not trust himself to put his choice of a s o c i a l identity into practice u n t i l the- passional aspect of his nature i s , quite l i t e r a l l y , amputated. We s h a l l have occasion to comment further on the s i g n i f i - cance of the conclusion to Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , of course, after we have traced the complex pattern of action and reaction that forms the body of the novel. We may f i n d , i n f a c t , that the c o n f l i c t i s more si g n i f i c a n t than the resolution. The two major aspects of R e s t i f s sentimental plot s , the hero's s e n t i - mental' i n c l i n a t i o n to adhere to s o c i a l values, and the obstacle to this adherence opposed by his passions, are so equally balanced as to make resolution appear impossible; and thi s may be the most s i g n i f i c a n t comment the novel has to make concerning the relationship between human nature, morality, and happiness. 99 The improvements on the internal sentimental c o n f l i c t manifest i n Le Paysan perverti are not, furthermore, the only modifications i n technique that make the complexity of moral problems more e x p l i c i t i n this novel than i n R e s t i f s e a r l i e r f i c t i o n . The sustained internal sentimental plot places Edmond i n a d i f f i c u l t s ituation by depriving him of the influences that i n the early novels have turned the choice between pas- sional and sentimental motivations into a simple choice between black and white; and the epistolary form of the novel, i n the point of view i t offers on Edmond's experiences, places the reader i n a similar s i t u a t i o n . There i s no authoritative partisan narrator i n Le Paysan perverti who mitigates the moral ambiguities of Edmond and his experiences for the reader. We are just as involved as Edmond i n the exploratory nature of his moral-sentimental education. We r e c a l l that i n La Confidence necessaire Restif has already associated the epistolary form with the internal sen- timental plot; but the potential of the epistolary form for involving the reader i n the hero's c o n f l i c t s i s only p a r t i a l l y exploited. Austin's correspondence i s simply a pretext for his retrospective narration of his own experiences, and i n fact this pretext for adopting the hero's point of view i s easily dispensed with i n La F i l l e n aturelle. Both Austin and D'Azinval are >furthermore, confirmed s o c i a l conformists when they narrate their adventures. In Le Paysan perverti Restif takes up again the tool of the epistolary form, and this time he puts i t to better use 100 i n reducing distance between the reader and the hero's dilemma. The epistolary form enhances, f i r s t , the intimacy of our acquain- tance with the p r i n c i p a l complicating element i n the main character's s i t u a t i o n , the c o n f l i c t i n g dispositions of the hero himself, for i t not only permits Edmond to expose his own attitudes and actions, i t permits, him to expose them as they occur. The epistolary form of Le Paysan perverti thus adds the effects of temporal immediacy to the effects of sp a t i a l immediacy already created., by .the first-person narrative of La Confidence necessaire. As a r e s u l t , Le Paysan perverti places Restif among the eighteenth century novelists for whom the epistolary form was "un instrument p r i v i l e g i e pour apprehender . . . l ' e v e i l et les vibrations de l a s e n s i b i l i t e , l e s caprices de 1'emotion." Although the epistolary form of Le Paysan perverti allows detailed apprehension of Edmond's capricious personality, his personality does not monopolize our attention. W T e thoroughly- apprehend as well the variety of influences that combine with Edmond's v a c i l l a t i n g s e n s i b i l i t y to produce a bumpy moral- sentimental career, for Restif extends the priv i l e g e of inde- pendent self-expression to the characters who take an active interest i n Edmond's destiny. These characters reveal more to us than to Edmond concerning the nature and motivation of the influence they exert, i n f a c t , for they write to each other as well as to Edmond. But our superior knowledge does not make i t easier for us to form dogmatic moral judgments of these Jean Rousset, Forme et S i g n i f i c a t i o n (Paris; 1962), p. 68. 101 characters, for the motivations they reveal are often as complex as those of Edmond himself. Re s t i f does not leave moral interpretation of his narrative e n t i r e l y up to his reader, however, i n spite of the r e l a t i v e freedom with which his characters express themselves. As i f he f e l t that i n this novel, as i n La F i l l e n a t u r e l l e . i t i s necessary to warn the reader against being taken i n by ambiguous behavior on the part of the characters, he supplies moral guideposts i n the comments of the "editor" of the l e t t e r s . Edmond's virtuous brother Pierre, who has organized the l e t t e r s and made them f i t for publication, provides t i t l e s for.the l e t t e r s , makes s i g n i f i c a n t suppressions, and adds footnotes, i n order to remind the reader of the moral ideal from which the characters a l l too frequently depart. These comments are easily overlooked, however, i n the heat of the action. They are often simply neutral resumes of the l e t t e r s Pierre presents; and the moral commentary he does offer tends to acknowledge the fact that the evidence of the narrative does not lend i t s e l f to dogmatic moral interpretations. Letter headings such as "Melange de bien et de mai; mais ce dernier l'emporte" ( I I , 205), or "L'innocence quelquefois s'en impose a elle-meme" ( I I , 253), are so vague that they i n fact leave considerable l i b e r t y of interpretation to the reader. Pierre does provide, however, a more substantial moral i d e a l , within the narrative i t s e l f , against which the reader, as well as Edmond, may compare the hero's attitudes and actions. Pierre i s one of Edmond's p r i n c i p a l correspondents, and he i s 102 Edmond's only link, with the family he leaves behind on the farm. Pierre's descriptions of the innocent, industrious, and happy l i f e he leads provides a point of contrast with the l i f e Edmond leads i n the c i t y — and his l e t t e r s also constitute one of the influences which sustain, rather than resolve, the c o n f l i c t between Edmond's passional and sentimental i n c l i n a t i o n s . It i s clear that the technical devices that l i n k morality and happiness i n the e a r l i e r novels are i n large part absent from Le Paysan perverti; and that these devices are replaced by enlargements upon the very aspects of technique that tend, i n the pre-Paysan novels, to expose the weaknesses i n the l i n k between morality and happiness. This i n fact results i n a more effect i v e incorporation of morality i n the f i c t i o n a l action, as we s h a l l now see i n our analysis of Edmond R-~'s moral-senti- mental education. ££££ When Edmond arrives i n Au to take up residence at the home of M. Parangon, the painter who i s to teach him his a r t , he brings i n his baggage a general commitment to country values, and a pa r t i c u l a r commitment to the values relevant to his pre- v a i l i n g i n t e r e s t , women. Edmond assumes that only shy, gentle, innocent women, who inspire respect for their v i r t u e , are l i k e l y to make a man happy i n marriage. He reveals his emotional attachment to this p r i n c i p l e i n his l e t t e r s to his elder brother Pie r r e , when he describes his at t r a c t i o n to two women he has met i n the town who display those q u a l i t i e s . Of the f i r s t , Tiennette, a servant i n the Parangon household, he writes, 103 " B i l e me f a i t ; q u e l q u e f o i s songer a Marie-Jeanne; t o n aimable m a i t r e s s e e s t du meme c a r a c t e r e que T i e n n e t t e . Que j e t e tr o u v e heureux!" ( I , 26) T h i s i s a h i g h compliment t o T i e n n e t t e , f o r P i e r r e ' s f i a n c e e i s an i n c a r n a t i o n of the f e m i n i n e v i r t u e s p r i z e d i n the c o u n t r y . Edmond i s not d e s t i n e d t o f i n d a h a p p i - ness analogous t o P i e r r e ' s w i t h T i e n n e t t e , however, because she i s a l r e a d y spoken f o r . He next t u r n s h i s a t t e n t i o n s t o another g i r l o f s i m i l a r c h a r a c t e r , Edmee, who seems r i p e f o r the p i c k i n g : "On v o i t a sa g a i t e , que son coeur e s t encore i n s e n s i b l e ; a. l a douceur de ses r e g a r d s , a son embarras quand un jeune homme l u i p a r l e , a 1'aimable rougeur dont ses joues se c o l o r e n t , q u ' e l l e ne l e s e r a pas longtemps." ( I , 47) Edmond envi s a g e s a happin e s s w i t h Edmee s i m i l a r t o t h a t of T i e n n e t t e and her f i a n c e , of whom he say s , "En v e r i t e , ces jeunes g e n s - l a s'aiment b i e n ! . . . Je l e s a v a i s d e j a , mais j e sens comme i l s d o i v e n t e t r e heureux, d e p u i s que j ' a i vu Edmee." ( I , 54) At the same time Edmond i s e n t e r t a i n i n g n o t i o n s o f a c q u i r i n g a c o u n t r y - s t y l e h a p p i n e s s , however, he d i s c o v e r s t h a t t h e r e may be o t h e r s o u r c e s of happiness as w e l l . He has a tendency t o a p p r e c i a t e the r e f i n e m e n t s of d r e s s and manner "capables de demonter 1'homme l e p l u s r a s s i s " ( I , 32) p e c u l i a r t o c i t y women. The s e n s u a l n a t u r e of t h i s response becomes e v i d e n t when Manon P a l e s t i n e , Parangon's e l e g a n t and b e a u t i f u l c o u s i n by m a r r i a g e , who i s a c t i n g as m i s t r e s s of the house ( i n more ways than one) i n Mme Parangon's absence, b e g i n s making advances t o Edmond. When she p r a i s e s h i s appearance and e s t a b l i s h e s p h y s i c a l c o n t a c t , Edmond r i s e s t o the o c c a s i o n . A l l Manon 104 need do i s step on his foot, and he i s "beside himself". He does not describe his reaction i n d e t a i l when Manon proceeds to hold his hand, but we may assume that the comment, "J'etais l o i n de m'ennuyer avec Mile Manon," ( I , 35) i s understatement. Edmond i s thus involved i n his f i r s t c o n f l i c t . He i s confronted with the necessity of choosing between g r a t i f i c a t i o n of his emotional in c l i n a t i o n s and g r a t i f i c a t i o n of his sensual i n c l i n a t i o n s . He i s not yet aware of the moral implications of this choice, however. He knows that Manon's charms have a diff e r e n t effect on him than those of Edmee, but he does not know that i n responding to them, he r i s k s compromising his commitment to virtuous love. Edmond's indecisions are temporarily suspended at this point by the return hone of Mme Parangon, for she appeals to both the in c l i n a t i o n s he has discovered i n himself so f a r . He accordingly ranks her at the top of the l i s t of women who have made an impression on him: E l l e n'a peut-etre r i e n de plus mignon dans les t r a i t s que les t r o i s autres; car Tiennette est bien mignonne; Idle Manon l'est aussi, et de plus e l l e a un je ne sais quoi qui parle aux sens . . . Edmee a l a plus belle chevelure brune, un a i r seduisant de jeunesse et d'ingenuite s i touchant, s i touchant1.... Mais dans Mme Parangon les a t t r a i t s sont plus developpes; e l l e a cette aisance et cette grace que donne 1'usage du monde, surtout l e sejour a l a cap i t a l e , et dont on n'a pas d'idee chez nous . . . ajoute a. cela que ses vertus font encore plus d'impression sur moi que ses charmes. ( I , 76) In a word, Mme Parangon combines the seductive elegance of Manon and the sweet virtue of Edmee. No wonder, then, that Edmond should experience the strongest at t r a c t i o n of a l l toward 105 her: "Je sens,, en m'occupant d ' e l l e , un feu dans ma p o i t r i n e , une j o i e , un p l a i s i r , avec des mouvements...." ( I , 71) Pierre hastens to remind Edmond that his enthusiasm i s wasted, for of course he cannot think of Mme Parangon as a solution to his c o n f l i c t . Both the tone and the content of his reply e f f e c t i v e l y dampen Edmond's impulsive fervor: " . . . i l n'y a r i e n la. pour t o i , entends-tu, mon Edmond, et je ne te conseille pas de t ' a l l e r tant mettre son rnerite dans 1'esprit; c'est a. son mari a. s'occuper de ga; s ' i l ne l e voit pas, tant pis pour l u i . " ( I , 74) It i s Mme Parangon who w i l l eventually cause Edmond to experience most cruelly the c o n f l i c t between his sentimental and his sensual i n c l i n a t i o n s . But f i r s t , he must work out the Edmee - Manon c o n f l i c t . Edmond decides to marry Manon. A number of fac t o r s , added to his sensual a t t r a c t i o n to her, swing the balance i n her favor. Edmond knows Manon better than Edmee, the folks back home favor the choice of Manon because she i s more suitable to his "avancement dans l e monde", and marriage to Manon would establish a close and at the same time legitimate relationship to Mme Parangon: " . . . je sens un p l a i s i r que je ne saurais exprimer, l o r s que je songe que par la. je serai l e cousin de Mme Parangon." ( I , 77) Edmond i s furthermore convinced by his response to Manon's demonstrations of af f e c t i o n that he loves her "pour l a v i e " . This i s one of the occasions upon which Pierre offers a point of contrast with his brother. When Edmond brings his fiancee home to meet the family, Pierre i s impressed by her 106 coquettish ways, and by Edmond's galantry. He i n fact envies Edmond s l i g h t l y , and he even expresses the wish that his own fiancee were a b i t l i k e Manon, but, as he says, "ga n'est pas l a mode i e i que les f i l l e s disent aux garcons de s i :jolis p e t i t s mots, et puis e i , et puis ca, s i gracieusement q u ' i l me semble que mon o r e i l l e en est chatouillee." ( I , 99) Pierre l a t e r opposes his own simple and down-to-earth method of court- ship to that of Edmond and Manon i n the following terms. V o i l a l e s douceurs que je debite a Marie-Jeanne. Je ne loue jamais sa figure; quand i l n'y aurait point de miroirs, une femme saurait toujours mieux que personne ce qu'elle a de j o l i ; mais je l u i prends l a main, et je ne l a baise pas au moins, comme tu f a i s a i s , et je l u i d i s : — Marie- Jeanne, tu me parais bien soigneuse, tu seras bonne menagere quand nous serons ensemble; tu aimes ton pere et ta mere, tu aimeras bien ceux qui viendront de t o i . . . tout me revient en t o i , Marie-Jeanne, des pieds a. l a tete; ce n'est pas que tu sois plus j o l i e qu'une autre, mais tu es propre, tout te va . . . s i bien done, Marie- Jeanne, que nous serons bien ensemble tous-deux — En f i n i s s a n t ces paroles, je l a l a i s s e , et je l a v o i s , quand je m'en vas, qui me regarde tant qu'elle peut; et s i je me retourne tout a. f a i t , e l l e baisse les yeux, et devient toute honteuse. ( I , 125-126) Pierre soon becomes aware that he was wrong to envy Edmond his fiancee's seductive ways. Behind the difference i n manners between Manon and Marie-Jeanne, there i s a fundamental d i f f e r - ence i n morals. Just before Edmond's wedding i s to take place, Mme Parangon reveals that Manon i s pregnant by Parangon, and the marriage to Edmond i s to save her honor — and perhaps cover further "accidents" that might occur as she continues her a f f a i r with Parangon. Edmond's f i r s t r e f l e x , i n view of the knowledge that Manon 107 does not conform to his ideas of feminine morality, i s to reject her. But when he v i s i t s her, with the intention of informing her of his decision, his resolve i s weakened, to his own astonishment: Je l a trouvai plus tendre, plus b e l l e , plus interessante que jamais; en ce moment, e l l e e f f a c a i t tout ce que je connaissais d'aimable. Je baissai les yeux, mon coeur palpita; je l a re g r e t t a i . . . je regre t t a i qu'elle ne me parut plus digne de mon attachement . . . E l l e e x c i t a i t au fond de mon coeur des desirs; son indignite ne les empechait pas de n a i t r e , je sentis meme un a i g u i l l o n plus v i f ; je ne sais de quelle nature eta i t ce mouvement-la; sans doute i l n'etait pas pur, car j'en rougis 1'instant d'apres . . . je me d i s a i s , e l l e ne sera pas ma femme, j'aimerais mieux mourir, que de s o u f f r i r qu'elle devienne ma femme; et je l a desire! ( I , 162-163) In this interview with Manon, the evidence of Edmond's senses supports some indoctrination he has been receiving i n the background to the effect that happiness need not be limited to moral relationships i n a r i g i d sense of the term. In con- versations concerning the r e l a t i v i t y of morals, Gaudet, a 7 cousin of Manon, and D'Arras, a p r i e s t , have been implanting i n Edmond the suspicion that the requirements for happiness he brought with him from the farm are not dictated by his own temperament at a l l , they have been suggested to him by others; they are merely prejudices. Manon does not, furthermore, shock Edmond's moral s e n s i b i l i t i e s as thoroughly as he had imagined, for she recognizes the error of her ways, and follows through with a complete reform. The arguments of theory, his own senses, These two characters are combined i n the t h i r d edition of the novel to create the l i b e r t i n e monk, Gaudet d'Arras. 108 and Manon 1 s repentance convince Edmond that Manon does answer the requirements of his temperament after a l l . He marries her, and she does make him happy, not precisely because of the flaw i n her v i r t u e , but because of the temperament that has made the flaw possible. Manon i s sensible, "le contraire de ces belles indolentes, toujours tiedes, qui se croient des modeles a, c i t e r , parce qu'elles n'ont pas de temperament. Oui, ma femme est sensible, voluptueuse meme (et c'est une qualite selon moi) mais e l l e n'est pas vicieuse." ( I , 235-236) It would seem that i n marrying Manon, Edmond has effected a satisfactory compromise between his prejudices and his sensual i n c l i n a t i o n s ; but we soon learn that Edmond's temperament does not lend i t s e l f to compromise. Marriage to Manon has taught him that he can l e t his passions dominate his conscience without disastrous consequences for his happiness, so he pushes experi- mentation with his new faculty further, i n the seduction of an innocent v i r g i n . We might believe that this act i s the most direct affront to his o r i g i n a l code of morality conceivable, i f we did not happen to know that eventually he w i l l commit incest with his s i s t e r , for i t constitutes an i n f i d e l i t y to his wife, the g i r l he seduces i s his cousin Laurie , whom he would probably have married had he stayed on the farm, and the seduction takes place on home ground, during the celebration of Pierre's marriage. It may be, of course, that the scene of the seduction i s dictated i n part by the epistolary form of the novel, for i f Edmond were obliged to continue revealing his actions i n his 109 l e t t e r s to Pierre, we would not know what he i s up to. He i s not s u f f i c i e n t l y emancipated to reveal his turpitude to his virtuous brother — who does not even know, i n f a c t , that Edmond has married Manon. Edmond's return home permits him, therefore, to describe his a c t i v i t i e s i n l e t t e r s to Gaudet, the most appropriate recipient of such confidences. Edmond appears to be thoroughly enjoying his role as seducer, for he writes, " . . . l a petite cousine m'a presque aneanti. Je l'aime, je 1'adore, j'en suis fou, je ne saurais l a quitter . . . " (I, 205) Yet there i s ample indication that Edmond has not become a fu l l - f l e d g e d l i b e r t i n e . He i n d i - cates that his charming cousin has not annihilated his moral reflex e s , by announcing his intention to discontinue the l i a i s o n when he i s reunited with his wife. Edmond s t i l l feels that "sans [les vertus morales3 , on n'est pas digne de v i v r e , car l'on doit racheter ses vices par quelquechose." ( I , 206) Edmond does not, furthermore, l i m i t his enjoyment of the wedding f e s t i v i t i e s to indulgence of his passions. Mme Parangon i s also present at the wedding, and although — or perhaps because — Edmond i s as strongly attracted to her as ever, he i s not tempted to practice his seducer's art on her. On the contrary, he says, " . . . l e respect que je ressens pour Mme Parangon, est un p l a i s i r pour moi: je n'en a i pas davantage a aimer Manon, que de respecter l a vertueuse Colette C ." (I , 199) This l i n g e r i n g attachment to virtue i s further r e i n - forced by the knowledge, acquired through eavesdropping, that Mme Parangon loves him. Although for the moment the revelation 110 renews Edmond's desire to merit her a f f e c t i o n , i t i s becoming abundantly clear that loving virtue i n the person of Mme Parangon i s dangerous for the virtues of both of them. A sensual undertow i n the calm waters of their relationship makes i t s e l f f e l t during a s t r o l l i n the country. Mme Parangon turns her ankle, thus obliging Edmond to support her i n his arms, with the following r e s u l t : " . . . une jouissance ne vaut pas ce que j ' a i eprouve; je ne pouvais me resoudre a l a poser a t e r r e . Un regard ( j ' a i cru que l a Purete meme l'avait lance) un simple regard m'a impose; je l ' a i timidement priee de s'asseoir." ( I , 210-211) The comparison Edmond chooses to describe his sensations i s surely s i g n i f i c a n t . Mme Parangon reveals equivocal sentiments as well, i n the conversation overheard by Edmond: "Tout a l'heure, i l m'a pris l a main, i l l ' a b a i s e e . . . . i l m'a f a l l u toute ma raison pour l a r e t i r e r ; i l a f a l l u me facher, pour m'etourdir sur une s a t i s f a c t i o n criminelle..." ( I , 214) Mme Parangon i s obviously more aware than Edmond of the threat to her virtue inherent i n loving him. She has already thought of a way of diverting the danger, i n fact; but we w i l l reserve our discussion of her solution to her own virtue-passion c o n f l i c t for the moment when i t influences Edmond d i r e c t l y . The encouragement provided by Mine Parangon to continue to find s a t i s f a c t i o n i n virtue i s supported by events that undermine Edmond's confidence i n his passions as a source of happiness. Laure becomes pregnant, Edmond's r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n the matter i s known, and Manon commits suicide out of despair at his i n f i d e l i t y . I l l Edmond's l i a i s o n with Laure dashes Manon's hopes of finding happiness i n virtuous love. She feels that her past sins w i l l constantly poison her relationship with her husband, because his i n f i d e l i t y i s i n d i r e c t l y caused by the very fault s she had hoped to efface by being a loving wife. It was, after a l l , she who f i r s t awakened his passions, and encouraged him to allow them to dominate his conscience. As she says, " . . . l e mepris q u ' i l a pour moi a relache ses moeurs: c'est moi qui souillet: une ame qui fut restee pure: je saurai m'en punir; et je m'en suis punie . . . " ( I , 267) The lesson of thi s disaster i s clear to Edmond: i l l i c i t passion i s an obstacle to both morality and happiness. To D'Arras he writes, "0 mon Pere! que je paye cher quelques heures de p l a i s i r ! II est v r a i , i l est done v r a i , que l a peine suit toujours l e crime . . . " ( I , 260) Edmond's remorse i s made a l l the more acute by the fact that' through his "crime" he has become a father; although the following expression of his regret, which he addresses to Pierre, suggests that he i s revolting against the i n j u s t i c e of s o c i a l prejudices as much as he i s reproaching himself for his act: "0 mon frere! pourquoi ce qui nous rend peres e s t - i l quelquefois un crime! C'est un nom s i doux! Heureux aine, tu l e porteras sans remords! au l i e u que l e crime empoisonne pour moi, jusque dans leur source mime, les faveurs de l a nature! . . . " ( I , 277) Edmond soon has the opportunity to envy the innocent joy Pierre and Marie-Jeanne f i n d i n parenthood, i n f a c t . The following l e t t e r from Pierre does l i t t l e to spare Edmond's feelings: 112 Oh! ce que c'est que l a nature! Marie-Jeanne, depuis qu'elle a mis un f i l s au monde, ne voit plus que l u i . . . s ' i l pousse un c r i , e l l e t r e s s a i l l e ; et s ' i l dort, e l l e 1'admire; et s ' i l s ' e v e i l l e , e l l e l e baise; et s ' i l l a regarde, e l l e l u i s o u r i t , mais d'un sourire!... 0 cher pe t i t enfant, des ton entree dans l e monde, tu possedes un tresor inestimable, l e coeur de ta mere, ce coeur s i pur, ou l e vice n'est jamais entre! ( I , 290) Edmond thus decides that virtue i s the surest source of happiness. As he announces to Gaudet, "Le raisonnement ne saurait l'emporter sur les sentiments, mon Cousin: je sens, et c'est plus que d'etre convaincu. Mettez de l a vertu, au l i e u de tous nos vic e s , n'etions-nous pas heureux?" ( I , 271) But al a s , Edmond does not get a chance to find out whether he could be happy by putting his virtues where his vices were. More of Gaudet's theories, and more opportunities to test them, encourage Edmond to renew his experimentation with his passions. After the death of Manon, Mme Parangon goes off to Paris, and Edmond i s faced with the necessity of finding something to occupy him: " . . . je vais succomber a 1'ennui; je sens deja. dans mon coeur un vide qui m'epouvante." ( I , 284) In short, Edmond needs a woman. Gaudet suggests one who i s not l i k e l y to further encourage Edmond to return to his prejudices. He introduces Edmond to Madelon Baron, " f i l l e charmante, vive, enjouee, qui parait toujours environneeJJ&s Graces et des Ris; mais a. qui l a Pudeur (dit-on) ne tient pas toujours aussi f i d e l e compagnie." ( I , 285) Edmond does not show much interest i n Madelon at f i r s t , so Gaudet launches another verbal attack on his moral reflexes. 113 Gaudet argues t h a t b o t h v i c i o u s and v i r t u o u s men a c t a c c o r d i n g t o the same p r i n c i p l e , p l e a s u r e : "Le mechant et 1'homme v e r t u e u x f o n t tous deux ce q u i l e u r p l a i t davantage; t o u t depend de l a p o s i t i o n , du p o i n t de vue . . . " ( I I , 5) The o n l y d i f f e r e n c e between them i s t h a t the p l e a s u r e s of the wicked man harm o t h e r s , whereas those o f the v i r t u o u s man do n o t . More e l a b o r a t e d i s t i n c t i o n s t h a n t h i s between good and bad a c t i o n s a re merely the r e s u l t of p r e j u d i c e . Indulgence of Edmond's s e n s u a l i n c l i - n a t i o n s would not o f f e n d , t h e r e f o r e , h i s e s s e n t i a l m o r a l s e n s i - b i l i t i e s , i t would merely o f f e n d h i s a r t i f i c i a l ones. Gaudet seems t o o v e r l o o k the f a c t t h a t when Edmond l a s t i n d u l g e d h i s p a s s i o n s he caused c o n s i d e r a b l e harm. I f Edmond were t o o f f e r t h i s o b j e c t i o n ( i t i s s u r p r i s i n g t h a t he does not) Gaudet would no doubt r e p l y t h a t p a s t e x p e r i e n c e does not i n v a l i d a t e the p l e a s u r e p r i n c i p l e , but r a t h e r p r o v i d e s p r o o f of h i s f u r t h e r argument t h a t c o n s i d e r a b l e judgment must be e x e r c i s e d i n the a p p l i c a t i o n of the p r i n c i p l e : " . . . l a j u s t e s s e de 1 ' e s p r i t e s t l a source de l a bonte du coeur; l e s mechants coeurs l e sont en consequence d'un e s p r i t f a u x . . . " ( I I , 8) The f a c t t h a t Edmond f a i l e d t o observe t h i s a r t i c l e i n Gaudet's code of b e h a v i o r when he seduced Laure was i n f a c t e x p l i c i t . He had announced h i s i n t e n t i o n s t o Gaudet i n the f o l l o w i n g terms: . . . l e s p l a i s i r s m'environnent, et j e m'y l i v r e sans c o n t r a i n t e . Ma f o i , t u as r a i s o n , i l f a u t j i o u i r ; ce n' e s t pas manquer de r e l i g i o n , que d'user des b i e n s que D i e u nous a donnes: c e t t e maxime, i l e s t v r a i , peut mener l o i n ; mais, cher •Mentor, t u j o i n s a c e t a r t a d m i r a b l e que t u as pour l e v e r l e s s c r u p u l e s , une prudence consommee; a i n s i j e m ' j abandonne . . . ( I , 197. Our emphasis) 114 Half convinced, Edmond consents to give Gaudet's philoso- phy another t r y . He begins seeing Madelon, and she gives weight to Gaudet 1 s arguments: "Tiens, l e meilleur argument en faveur de l a nouvelle facon de penser que tu m'invites a prendre, ce sont les charmes de Madelon. Des que je l a v o i s , je ne raisonne plus, je sens que l 1 evidence est pour e l l e et pour t o i . " ( I I , 16) There i s also evidence i n favor of a more moral source of happiness, however. Once again, Edmond finds someone i n his v i c i n i t y who prevents l i b e r t i n i s m from monopolizing his pleasures, just as he did when he was enjoying laure's favors. As we can see, the v a c i l l a t i o n we have described as charac t e r i s t i c of the movement i n this novel i s i n f u l l swing. Edmond has rediscovered Edmee, and i s again strongly attracted to her. He i s fullyaware that this attraction belies commitment to a l i b e r t i n e philosophy: " I I est v r a i . . . que cette beaute rendrait a ton Edmond toute sa bonhomie. Eh' Qu'importe, s ' i l e t a i t heureux? Je t'avertis que l a Baron aura besoin de toutesa legerete pour dissiper ma reverie." ( I I , 20) Madelon does succeed i n diverting him — " . . . e s p r i t , beaute, talents, vertu, e l l e eclipse tout; et 1'amour, 1'amour meme, l a douce et constante tendresse n'a pas autant de charmes que sa voluptueuse coquetterie." ( I I , 20) — but the effect i s only temporary. Edmond decides he does need the love Madelon cannot provide, but that i t cannot make him happy unless he can also indulge his passions, so marriage to Edmee i s the only solution: "Tel est mon malheur, que je ne puis . . . renoncer aux p l a i s i r s i l l i c i t e s qu'en leur substituant des 115 p l a i s i r s permis aussi v i f s , et plus durables." ( I I , 46) But once again, Edmond's friends intervene to prevent him from resolving his c o n f l i c t s according to his understanding of his own temperament. Gaudet objects to the marriage on the grounds that Edmond only thinks Edmee w i l l make him happy, and i n fact he w i l l soon be bored with "une innocente bergere, j o l i e fade, vertueuse et begueule." ( I I , 59) The decisive objection comes, however, from Mme Parangon, who has very different reasons for wishing to prevent Edmond's marriage. She has planned to marry Edmond to her younger s i s t e r Fanchette, a paragon of beauty and virtue l i k e h e r s e l f , when she comes of age. The marriage of Edmond and Fanchette i s the solution to her own virtue-passion c o n f l i c t that Mme Parangon had found when she f i r s t became aware of i t . "Ne pouvant esperer, n'osant meme pas nourrir l'esperance qu'Edmond puisse etre a moi," she had s a i d , "c'est a ma soeur que je l e destine . . . II serait mon f r e r e : a ce t i t r e je pourrais 1'aimer d'une maniere innocente; je ne rougirais plus de suivre un penchant plei n de douceur..." ( I , 214) In Mme Parangon's attitude toward love, and i n i t s conse- quences, we see a d e f i n i t e prolongation of the theme of virtuous love i n previous novels. We r e c a l l that i n the e a r l i e r f i c t i o n masculine-feminine love was assimilated to such society-oriented sentiments as f i l i a l love, friendship, and af f e c t i o n between brother and s i s t e r . These sorts of a f f e c t i o n were considered the ideal basis for marriage; although passion was not eliminated, 116 i t was considered secondary to these more constructive s e n t i - ments. Some characters, we remember, tended to take this de- f i n i t i o n of virtuous love rather l i t e r a l l y , and consider family relationships more s a t i s f y i n g and natural than those requiring a dash of passion i n order to ensure propagation of the species. ar ar The heroines of La Famille vertueuse, Adele de Com , and La Femme dans les t r o i s etats were cases i n point. Like these heroines, Mme Parangon mistrusts passion; but i n her i t i s not a matter of general p r i n c i p l e . She i s already married, and although she does not love her husband, she i s determined to remain virtuous. She therefore consciously channels the energies of her s e n s i b i l i t y into the non-passional r e l a t i o n - ships mentioned above. In speaking of herself she says, " E l l e s'est jetee dans les bras de l'amitie et de l a nature, pour eviter l'amour . . . que de combats pour tromper l a destination de l a nature!" ( I I , 57) But nature w i l l not be diverted from i t s course. In reading the e a r l i e r novels, we have had occasion to suspect that the channeling of s e n s i b i l i t y into non-passional r e l a t i o n - ships would not result i n the elimination of passion at a l l . Passion would very l i k e l y emerge i n these very relationships, giving r i s e to such phenomena as lesbianism and incest (see above, p. 18). This suspicion was borne out by the overtones of lesbianism i n La Femme dans les t r o i s etats, and i t i s now further confirmed by Mme Parangon. Mme Parangon had f i r s t attempted to redirect her love for Edmond by throwing herself into the "arms of friendship" with Ursule, Edmond's s i s t e r , who looks very much l i k e Edmond. Ursule's demonstrations of af f e c t i o n had brought Mme Parangon considerable s a t i s f a c t i o n , but she. finds herself obliged to give up this way of diverting her passion for Edmond. She has become aware that i n her demonstrations of affection for Ursule she i s not compensating for an i l l e g i t i m a t e passion, she i s i n fact expressing i t . Again speaking of herself in'the third person she says, "Une jeune beaute [Ursulej, qui l u i r e t r a c a i t des t r a i t s cheris, fut c e l l e qui l ' e c l a i r a ; e l l e sentit qu'elle l'aimait trop pour une amie . . . e l l e trembla de profaner l'amitie par une caresse sortie d'une source impure." ( I I , 57) It i s not clear whether Mme Parangon considers her sensual relations with Ursule i l l e g i t i m a t e because they are sensual, or because they are the expression of her passion for a man. In any case, the sensuality of the relationship i s made per- f e c t l y clear by Ursule much l a t e r i n the novel. When Gaudet compliments her on her l u b r i c i t y (she follows a path of corrup- ti o n p a r a l l e l to that of Edmond), she reveals that she acquired her "art de l a debauche" from Mme Parangon herself, for "ses caresses d'amitie sont comme cel l e s de l'amour." ( I l l , 22) Mme Parangon therefore feels that she might more success- f u l l y control her passion for Edmond i f she can give free expres- sion to the sentimental aspect of her attachment by loving him openly, as a s i s t e r . Hence her protest when Edmond reveals his desire to marry Edmee: " . . . e l l e voulait rendre legitime un attachement dont l a vertu s'effarouche, en l u i donnant un frere pour objet....vous ne l e voulez pas, Edmond; vous a l l e z 118 l a c o n t r a i n d r e a d i m i n u e r l e s se n t i m e n t s q u i f a i s a i e n t son bonheur, mais q u ' i l ne l u i c o n v i e n d r a i t pas de n o u r r i r pour l e ma r i d'une e t r a n g e r e . . . . " ( I I , 57-58) T h i s e p i s t o l a r y a p p e a l t o Edmond's g e n e r o s i t y i s supported by Mme Parangon's r e t u r n t o Au . A l t h o u g h the move w i l l prove t o have been a t a c t i c a l e r r o r , f o r the moment i t seems t o have the d e s i r e d e f f e c t . Edmond consents t o g i v e up Edmee, f o r Mme Parangon's presence, i n r e a c t i v a t i n g h i s a t t r a c t i o n t o h e r , r e - news h i s i n t e r e s t i n her h a p p i n e s s , and i n s p i r e s him t o c o n s i d e r the proposed m a r r i a g e t o F a n c h e t t e a s y m b o l i c m a r r i a g e to Mme Parangon. She i n f a c t encourages t h i s view when she says t o Edmond, "Je n'empeche pas que vous ne nous u n i s s i e z , ma soeur et moi. — Ah! Madame," r e p l i e s Edmond, " j e vous m e n t i r a i s , s i j e p r o m e t t a i s de vous s e p a r e r . " ( I I , 80) I t seems, f u r t h e r - more, t h a t the p r o s p e c t o f m a r r y i n g F a n c h e t t e w i l l have the same s a l u t a r y e f f e c t on Edmond t h a t he had expected of marr i a g e t o Edmee: " . . . j e v a i s m ettre tous mes s o i n s a me rendre d i g n e d ' e t r e son m a r i ; c ' e s t a u t a n t par l a v e r t u que par 1'amour que j e pret e n d s l a m e r i t e r . . . . " ( I I , 7 6 ) , and i n the meantime Mme Parangon's presence p r o v i d e s a l l the immediate h a p p i n e s s he needs. He t h e r e f o r e t e l l s Gaudet he can keep h i s l i b e r t i n e p h i l o s o p h y : " S o i s heureux par l e s p l a i s i r s que t u v a n t e s ; i l s ne sont pas f a i t s jjour mon coeur. J'en c o n n a i s de p l u s doux e t de p l u s p i q u a n t s ; l a t e n d r e , l a pure a m i t i e me l e s f a i t g o u t e r . " ( I I , 85) These u t o p i c p l a n s a re s h o r t l i v e d , of co u r s e . P a s s i o n a g a i n i n t e r v e n e s t o d e s t r o y the i l l u s i o n t h a t Mme Parangon can 119 fin d a virtuous outlet for her love for Edmond, but this time I t i s Edmond's passions that refuse to be sublimated. The proximity of Mme Parangon i s causing the sensual undercurrent i n his sentiments we have already observed to r i s e to the surface, to the point where he admits to Gaudet that he now wants her to " s a t i s f a i r e l e s desirs qu'elle inspire avec tant d'impetuousite." ( I I , 130) Gaudet has had a hand i n bringing things to this point, as might .be expected. He has observed that i t i s p r i n c i p a l l y Mme Parangon's virtue that has kept a l i v e Edmond's attachment to morality. I f he destroys that virtue by seducing her, w i l l he not destroy his attachment to morality i n the process? Such i s Gaudet's reasoning: . . . i l faut avoir eu Mme Parangon: e l l e p u r i f i e r a ton coeur, et ta v i c t o i r e chassera l e sot respect que tu as pour l a vertu du sexe: oui, l'ame brulante de cette femme sensible consumera ton penchant vicieux a l a sotte tendresse; elle'desechera cette humeur visqueuse et grossiere; en un mot, tu deviendras, apres 1'avoir vaincue, l e plus agreable des papillons d'amour. Eh! s e r a i t - i l possible que tu fusses tendre pour une autre femme, apres 1'avoir ete pour elle ? Non, mon ami; en te l a soumettant, c'est l e nec plus u l t r a de l a vertu feminine que tu auras vaincu . . . ( I I , 138-139) Although Edmond i s inclined to agree that " i l faut avoir eu Mme Parangon," his reasons are not the same as Gaudet's. As the penetrating Gaudet comments, "Ce n'est pas un plan sagement concu, digere par l a prudence, qui t'amene au point ou je t ' a i souhaite; c'est 1'exces de l a passion . . . " ( I I , 136-137) Gaudet's analysis of Edmond's motives i s prophetic. His attack on Mme Parangon's virtue i s e n t i r e l y uncalculated. The c r i s i s a r i s e s , i n f a c t , when Edmond rushes to Mme Parangon's side "pour y abjurer tout ce qui pouvait l u i deplaire dans [ses] 120 sentiments" ( I I , 146), upon her discovery of the above exchanges between Edmond and Gaudet. In comparison to the scene that follows, Edmond's previous sentiment-passion c o n f l i c t s have been minor skirmishes. Here the c o n f l i c t i s greatly i n t e n s i f i e d , for the antagonists meet for the f i r s t time on common ground. Edmond must now choose between c o n f l i c t i n g attitudes toward one woman, the one he loves best, rather than between minor women who gr a t i f y one or the other of his i n c l i n a t i o n s . The c o n f l i c t i n g demands of his temperament are furthermore brought to their f u l l intensity by Mme Parangon's superior appeal i n both areas. As a r e s u l t , we may say that Emond now vibrates, whereas before, he has only v a c i l l a t e d . Yet as we s h a l l see, even this new, more acute experience of his c o n f l i c t s does not su f f i c e to bring about a change i n his s i t u a t i o n . At f i r s t i t seems as i f Mme Parangon w i l l indeed inspire Edmond to forswear his dishonorable intentions: "II semblait que son entretien, ses avi s , eussent entierement ramene 1'innocence dans mon ame egaree." ( I I , 146) BUT . . . notre conversation fut trop longue: les desirs revinrent sourdement, et i l s m'avaient enivre avant que je m'en fusse apercu: mes yeux p e t i l l a i e n t ; mes mains inquietes, brulantes, ne touchaient d'abord que ses habits; bientot e l l e s s'emparent de sa main; e l l e s l a pressent; e l l e s en sont pressees.... Resister apres cela n'aurait pas ete d'un mortell..." ( I I , 146-147) Edmond does r e s i s t for the moment, however, and contents himself with expressing verbally his revolt against v i r t u e : "Maudite soit l a vertu ( s i c'est en avoir que de vous ressembler); l e vice est cent f o i s plus aimable — " ( I I , 147) Mme Parangon 121 again succeeds i n calming him, by appealing to his generosity i n asking him not to destroy her happiness, and by appealing to his egotism i n pointing out that a man of his delicacy should not wish to share her favors with her husband. She also speaks eloquently of her plans for Edmond and Fanchette, so that i n the end, says Edmond, "ce discours me charmait; j 1 e t a i s plus tendre, et moins entreprenant. J ' a i f a i t des protestations qu'on a crues sinceres (et qui l' e t a i e n t , mon ami)." ( I I , 149- 150) This might have been the denouement of the confrontation, had Edmond and Mme Parangon not sealed their accord with a k i s s . We note i n passing that although we may not be able to accuse Mme Parangon of consciously encouraging Edmond's advances, this i s a curiously irresponsible act for a woman so concerned for her v i r t u e , and so aware of Edmond's dispositions. As Edmond t e l l s i t , ". . . dans un transport dont l a cause me f a i s a i t i l l u s i o n a moi-meme, j ' a i hasarde un baiser, que je croyais d'un f r e r e . Ma cousine, devenue plus confiante, me l ' a rendu. Fatal baiser! i l a d&truit l e calme: l a tempete l a plus violente a succede." ( I I , 150) In Edmond's description of his v i o l a t i o n of Mme Parangon, which i s a direct v i o l a t i o n of his sentimental i n c l i n a t i o n s , i t i s evident that the act does not i n fact destroy his sentimentality, as Gaudet had hoped: Ce n'a pas ete 1'amour, mon ami; ce n'a pas ete l e plus delicieux des sentiments qui s'est empare de mon coeur: c'est une odieuse frenesie; c'est une sorte de rage . . . Dans mon emportement, je f r o i s s a i s , je meurtrissais avec une abominable 122 b r u t a l i t e ces appas enchanteurs, ces membres d e l i c a t s , qui ne doivent recevoir que des adorations et des caresses....Employer l a violence.. .Ah, dieu.' . . . et quel est l a victime de ce f o r f a i t horrible?....Ce que je respecte l e plus au monde.... ( I I , 150) Not only does Edmond f a i l to enjoy his act, he i s b i t t e r l y ashamed of i t . He once again rejects his passions as a source of happiness — and blames Gaudet f i r s t for this new discovery of their destructiveness: Ame c r u e l l e , ennemi de toute vertu, que n'es-tu pas i c i pour eprouver l e diabolique p l a i s i r de vo i r expirante l a victime de ta corruption, et l'egarement furieux du v i i instrument dont tu t'es s e r v i ! . . . Je te maudis...ou plutot, je me maudis moi-meme . . . 0 crime que tes f r u i t s sont amers! ( I I , 141-142) The crime promises to bear a f r u i t less b i t t e r than remorse, however. Mme Parangon i s pregnant, and this enables Edmond to find a j u s t i f i c a t i o n i n nature for his act: "Oh! plus de remords, les sentiments de l a nature... l e feu de l'amour doivent l e s avoir tous consumes I..." ( I I , 161) Another event occurs to divert Edmond's attention from his remorse. Ursule, who has been residing i n Paris, has been kidnapped, and Edmond rushes off to save her, and take revenge on her abductor.^ Edmond's preoccupation with Ursule's d i f f i c u l t i e s provides a useful hiatus i n the action of the novel. Gaudet and Mme Restif f o r e s t a l l s reader c r i t i c i s m of this carryover of the s u p e r f i c i a l devices of the early novels by placing i t i n the mouth of a character: "Eniever, v i o l e r , fi-donc! On ne peut r i e n de plus bourgeois! C e t a i t bon pour nos grand'meres: aujourd'hui l'on est s i degoute des enlevements, q u ' i l s u f f i t d'en v o i r un dans une brochure nouvelle pour qu'on l a jette l a , et qu'on prenne de 1'auteur et du l i v r e l a plus mince idee!..." ( I I , 169) 123 Parangon (who has emerged from the temporary madness brought on by Edmond's a t t a c k w i t h s t r e n g t h e n e d , though humbled, v i r t u e ) p r o f i t from the s u s p e n s i o n of Edmond's a c t i v e involvement i n h i s own c o n f l i c t s t o d e f i n e the c o n f l i c t on an i n t e l l e c t u a l l e v e l . Each r a l l i e s arguments t o support h i s own d e f i n i t i o n o f h a p p i n e s s , i n hope of i n f l u e n c i n g the f u r t h e r course of Edmond's s e a r c h f o r moral i d e n t i t y . And t h i s resume of the approaches t o l i f e t h ey r e p r e s e n t — i n t h e i r own o p i n i o n s , a t any r a t e — p r o v i d e s us w i t h some t h e o r i e s c o n c e r n i n g the r e l a t i o n s h i p between human n a t u r e and s o c i e t y a g a i n s t which t o compare Edmond,'s p r a c t i c a l e x p e r i e n c e of t h a t r e l a t i o n s h i p i n the f i r s t h a l f of the n o v e l . Mme Parangon's d e f i n i t i o n of happiness i s an echo of the one developed i n the e a r l y n o v e l s . "On a beau d i r e , et beau f a i r e , " she a f f i r m s , " l e d r o i t , l e j u s t e , l ' h o n n e t e sont e s s e n t i e l s pour l e bonheur . . . " ( I I , 182) A c c o r d i n g t o Mme Parangon, the p l e a s u r e of d o i n g good i s i n f i n i t e l y s u p e r i o r t o the p l e a s u r e s o f v i c e : " . . . en redevenant C h r e t i e n , vous s e r e z t o u t a. l a f o i s bon f i l s , bon ami, bon c i t o y e n ; et un j o u r bon m a r i e t bon pere; en un mot, Edmond, vous s e r e z heureux." ( I I , 228-229) Mme Parangon a l s o accuses Gaudet o f a t t e m p t i n g t o l e a d Edmond i n a d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed d i r e c t i o n , a l t h o u g h she g r u d g i n g l y r e c o g n i z e s t h a t h i s motives a r e s i m i l a r 9 t o h er own: Q The motives of Gaudet resemble h e r s more than she r e a l i z e s , i n f a c t . I n Gaudet, as w e l l as i n Mme Parangon, t e n d e r f r i e n d - s h i p f o r Edmond i s supported by s e n s u a l a t t r a c t i o n . The most e x p l i c i t i n d i c a t i o n o f t h i s i s g i v e n i n an e d i t o r ' s n o t e : " . . . nous avons supprime, sans aucune i n d i c a t i o n , beaucoup de choses 124 Nous vous aimons tous l e s deux; et sans doute vous ne c r o i r e z pas que j e s o i s l a moins t e n d r e et l a moins d e s i n t e r e s s e e . Cependant n o t r e c o n d u i t e e s t t o u t a f a i t d i f f e r e n t e . Mon a m i t i e pour vous me f a i t d e s i r e r que vous soyez . . . un nomine ferme dans son d e v o i r envers l a s o c i e t e . Que demande au c o n t r a i r e l ' a m i t i e de v o t r e s e d u c t e u r ? Que vous b r i s i e z t o u s l e s l i e n s q u i vous a t t a c h e n t a D i e u et . . . aux hommes. ( I I , 204-205) The p h i l o s o p h y proposed by Gaudet does not , however, t u r n the a l t e r n a t i v e a t t i t u d e s toward s o c i a l c o n f o r m i t y which the two r e p r e s e n t i n t o a c h o i c e between b l a c k and w h i t e . Gaudet s i m p l y s u g gests a broader d e f i n i t i o n o f good and of p l e a s u r e than does Mme Parangon. He q u a l i f i e s her maxim, " i l n'y a de bonheur que dans l e BIEN," by s a y i n g , "On t r o u v e t o u j o u r s du p l a i s i r dans l e b i e n , " i n i t s narrow d e f i n i t i o n , but "ce s e r a i t a l l e r c o n t r e t o u t e e v i d e n c e , c o n t r e l e s vues et l a d e s t i n a t i o n de l a n a t u r e , que de p r e t e n d r e que l e s a c c e s s o i r e s du bonheur ne se t r o u v e n t pas dans l e s j o u i s s a n c e s , qu'on ne peut nommer proprement de bonnes a c t i o n s morales . . . " ( I I , 190-191) A c t i o n s t h a t do not f a l l w i t h i n the c a t e g o r y "bonnes a c t i o n s m o r a l e s " cannot a u t o m a t i c a l l y be c o n s i d e r e d bad, f o r n a t u r e ' s s c a l e of v a l u e s i s b r o a d e r , and more a u t h o r i t a t i v e , than t h a t o f s o c i e t y : "Tout ce que defend l a n a t u r e e s t u n i v e r s e l et a b s o l u , " and o n l y the laws of s o c i e t y t h a t c o i n c i d e w i t h those o f n a t u r e a r e v a l i d . T h i s l i m i t a t i o n reduces laws worthy of q u i a u r a i e n t e c l a i r e l e l e c t e u r s u r l a n a t u r e de 1'attachement de Gaudet pour Edmond: l e v o i l e ne peut e t r e t r o p e p a i s l a - d e s s u s . " ( I I , 43) L a t e r e d i t i o n s of the n o v e l , the f o u r t h i n p a r t i c u l a r , a r e l e s s d i s c r e e t on the s u b j e c t o f the homosexual m o t i v a t i o n s behind Gaudet's d e v o t i o n t o Edmond, but the r e l a t i o n - s h i p never becomes c e n t r a l to the a c t i o n o f the n o v e l . 125 r e s p e c t t o those t h a t a r e based on s e l f p r e s e r v a t i o n and r e c i p r o c i t y . A l l o t h e r laws are e i t h e r laws o f decency or pure c a p r i c e , based o n l y on p r e j u d i c e , and t h e r e f o r e s u p e r f l u o u s . F i n d i n g the good i n t h i s sense depends of course on the e x e r c i s e o f r e a s o n . As Gaudet c o u n s e l s Edmond, . . . prends de l a n a t u r e et de l a d i v i n i t e , des i d e e s s a i n e s ; e t u d i e l e p h y s i q u e , et s u r c e t t e etude b i e n r e f l e c h i e , fonde t o u t e t a morale. Tu s e r a s a l o r s un e t r e n a t u r e l e t s o c i a l , d'une maniere e c l a i r e e , qui ne t e r e n d r a p l u s e s c l a v e et malheureux; t u v e r r a s jusqu'ou t u peux t ' e c a r t e r des l o i x s o c i a l e s , Sans t r o u b l e r 1'ordre p o l i t i q u e , et sans t ' a t t i r e r de l a p a r t des a u t r e s i n d i v i d u s une r e p u l s i o n d e s a g r e a b l e . CTT7 199) In Gaudet's view, i t i s i n f a c t t o the advantage of s o c i e t y , as w e l l as t o t h a t of the i n d i v i d u a l , t h a t r e a s o n r e p l a c e p r e j u d i c e as a guide t o b e h a v i o r , "de peur que \les yeux des personnesj venant a se d e s s i l l e r d'eux-memes, e l l e s ne se t r o u v e n t sans f r e i n , ne se perd e n t , et ne causent bea/ucoup de mai aux a u t r e s . " ( I I , 202) T h i s debate between the advocate of s o c i a l c o n f o r m i t y and the advocate o f c o n f o r m i t y t o the laws of n a t u r e r e s u l t s i n a de a d l o c k as f a r as Edmond i s concerned. As he c o n f e s s e s t o Gaudet, Tu vas d i r e que j e s u i s t o u j o u r s pour l e d e r n i e r q u i p a r l e . J ' e t a i s pour t o i , i l n'y a que h u i t j o u r s ; et j e s u i s c o n t r e a p r e s e n t . . . Lorsque t u es aupres de moi, que t u me p a r i e s , que t u reponds a t o u t e s mes o b j e c t i o n s , avec c e t t e p r o m p t i t u d e , c e t a i r a s s u r e q u i t ' e s t p r o p r e , t u me f a i s p a r t a g e r l a c o n v i c t i o n que j e v o i s dans t e s yeux: l e t o n i m p e r i e u x que t u prends d ' a i l l e u r s m'impose: mais l o r s q u e j e s u i s aupres de ma c o u s i n e , i l me semble entendre l a v o i x melodieuse de l a v e r t u elle-meme: l a p e r s u a s i o n c o u l e de ses l e v r e s . . . Lorsque j e s u i s aupres de l ' u n ou de 1' a u t r e , j e ne v o i s 126 que par vos yeux, et c'est votre ame qui m'anime. Au nom de notre amitie, ne me t i r a i l l e z pas a i n s i ; jouez-moi au des, et que c e l u i de vous deux qui me gagnera m'enleve a. 1'autre . . . ( I I , 229-230) Edmond's i n a b i l i t y to choose his identity on.the theoretical level, has been amply prepared i n practice. The action of the novel has been marked by impasses, i n the sense that aspects of Edmond's s e n s i b i l i t y have led him i n directions he cannot pursue, due to interference by other aspects of that same s e n s i b i l i t y . This has meant that his temperament has placed him i n neither of the positions v i s - a - v i s society described by Mme Parangon and Gaudet. Each suits part of his character, but neither s a t i s f i e s i t e n t i r e l y . Throughout the f i r s t part of the novel, Edmond's s e n s i b i l i t y has inclined him to the acceptance of Mme Parangon's d e f i n i t i o n of happiness he now expresses: "Je sens qu'elle a raison, mon coeur l e c r i e plus fo r t qu'elle; nous cherchons l e bonheur ou i l n'est pas . . . " ( I I , 187) This i s the propen- s i t y that Edmond brought with him from the v i l l a g e , and that has continued to express i t s e l f i n his effort s to establish moral relationships with virtuous women such as Edmee and Mme Parangon. But Edmond i s incapable of following through this emotional attachment to virtue with active commitment, because i t f a i l s to dominate the sensual aspect of his s e n s i b i l i t y . It i s his sensuality that has resulted i n the concrete acts of the novel, marriage to Manon, involvement with Laure and Madelon, and the attack on Mme Parangon. His compulsive indulgence of his passions thus prevents him from being the happily virtuous individual Mme Parangon wants him to be; but i t does not place 127 him i n Gaudet's camp, either. The reliance on the laws of nature as a guide to conduct recommended by Gaudet offers Edmond the p o s s i b i l i t y of s a t i s - fying his need to believe that he i s adhering to some sort of absolute moral order, and at the same time allows a freer play to his passions than does a narrow r e l i g i o u s or s o c i a l d e f i n i - tion of morality. Edmond's adherence to this philosophy i s , however, only i n t e l l e c t u a l , and sporadic, at that; i t i s not supported by emotional conviction. Reference to the laws of nature does not replace Edmond's moral reflexes as a basis for judging good and bad, i t merely weakens them s u f f i c i e n t l y to allow him to seize opportunities to indulge his rampant sensu- a l i t y , and to j u s t i f y i t s indulgence after the f a c t , p a r t i c u l a r l y when children are the r e s u l t . But his need for g r a t i f i c a t i o n of his sentimental attachment to more orthodox morality con- stantly intervenes to render the happiness he finds i n physical relationships incomplete. This has been manifest i n the f a c i l i t y with which he i s distracted from his mistresses when a s e n t i - mental attachment presents i t s e l f , as when Mme Parangon dist r a c t s him from his involvement with Laure, and when f i r s t Edmee, then Mme Parangon divert his attention from Madelon Baron; and of course i t has been manifest as well i n the remorse Edmond experiences following expression of his passions, even before i t results i n a concrete disaster such as the death of Manon. S e n s i b i l i t y thus prevents Edmond from being a happy l i b e r t i n e , as Gaudet himself recognizes i n the following pene- tr a t i n g analysis of Edmond's character: 128 . . . tu as sans doute de 1'esprit; mais i l est offusque par une imagination qui s'allume trop facilement; ce qui vient, je c r o i s , de l'exquise s e n s i b i l i t e dont tu es doue. Les personnes de ce caractere ont un grand defaut, c'est que l a s e n s i b i l i t e , toujours aveugle, leur tenant l i e u de penetration, leur jugement est embarrassee par une sorte d'ivresse . . . l e sentiment etouffe l e raisonnement. ( I I , 188-190) S e n s i b i l i t y functions i n two ways as the obstacle to Edmond's adoption of a r a t i o n a l compromise between his own nature and s o c i a l values. According, to Gaudet, a man who i s liberated from prejudice should not become l e sectateur de tous les vices et de tous les abus: i l respecte l a Nature et ses l o i x sacrees: s i d'abord, et dans l e premier moment de l i b e r t e , i l ressemble a un plomb suspendu, qui eloigne de l a perpendiculaire, retourne beaucoup au-dela; l'homme 6claire revient aussi, comme ce plomb, peu a. peu au juste milieu, qui constitue l'honnete homme et l e bon citoyen. C'est l a position ou je me trouve, et c e l l e ou je te desire. ( I I , 278) In Gaudet's view, passion, as well as sentiment, must be dominated by reason. We have seen, however, that reason does not moderate sentimentality i n Edmond; nor does i t moderate passion, as he has indicated i n his description of his involve- ments with Laure and Mme Parangon. These tendencies w i l l continue to develop i n the remainder of the novel. Reason weakens more and more the tenuous hold of moral prejudices over Edmond's passions, but i t never replaces those prejudices as control. Indulgence of his passions becomes a l i f e style for Edmond, to the point that even the l i b e r a l Gaudet i s startled: "Vous etes . . . d'un sang ou l'on ne donne que dans les extremes . . . je ne me serais jamais attendu a tout ce qui est a r r i v e . . . " ( I l l , 59) Gaudet thus deserves 129 only i n part the appellation "corruptor" that i s frequently applied to him by the "editor" of the novel, Edmond's brother P i e r r e . In implanting i n Edmond the idea that expression of his passions i s j u s t i f i e d , Gaudet does not make Edmond a s o c i a l m i s f i t . It i s Edmond himself who does so, by misapplying Gaudet's philosophy. Edmond l a t e r recognizes this i n a rare moment of l u c i d i t y : " . . . c'est moi, qui changeant tout en venin, en a i abuse comme de tout l e reste. Et voila, bien l a preuve que j'avais l e coeur mechant, car des que l e f r e i n a ete ote, j.'ai bu 1'iniquite comme l'eau . . . " ( I l l , 49) Edmond i s not, furthermore, as corrupted as he thinks. Although his moral reflexes cease to function as control of his acts, they continue to function i n his judgments of them. In his elaboration of the s e l f c r i t i c i s m quoted above, Edmond i n fact indicates that his corrupt acts do not r e f l e c t his attitudes: . . . je n'ai plus respecte les l o i x sociales elles-memes, ces l o i x sages, dont je vois a present que l a force reprimante est l a source de l a f e l i c i t e des hommes. Malheureux que nous sommes! dans notre enfance, on fonde nos moeurs sur de chimeriques idees, qui ne peuvent soutenir les lumieres de l a saine raison; quand l e plei n jour est a r r i v e , quand l e tene'breux phantome de l'erreur est evanoui, i l ne nous reste plus de contrepoids n i de guide .... 0 Raison! viens a mon secours, et rentrons dans 1'ordre, s i je puis [sic]! ( I l l , 49) Edmond's s e n s i b i l i t y thus involves him i n a vicious c i r c l e that Gaudet's r a t i o n a l approach to morality, i n conjunction with the permissive atmosphere of c i t y l i f e , only succeeds i n aggravating, because i t i s half-digested. The more reason encourages Edmond to seize the multiple opportunities to indulge 130 h i s p a s s i o n s which c i t y l i f e o f f e r s , the more he i s exposed t o the unhappiness of knowing t h a t he i s v i o l a t i n g h i s y e a r n i n g t o be v i r t u o u s ; and the more i m p o s s i b l e i t becomes f o r him t o f u l - f i l l t h a t y e a r n i n g . When he f u l l y r e c o g n i z e s t h i s , the p a t t e r n of the a c t i o n changes. I n k e e p i n g w i t h the l o g i c of Edmond's temperament, the f i r s t major change i n h i s a t t i t u d e s and s i t u a t i o n w i l l not i n v o l v e a c o n v e r s i o n t o the r e a s o n he has so f e r v e n t l y i n v o k e d . B e f o r e we get t o t h i s r e v e r s a l , however, two more major e p i s o d e s complete the sequence of impasses i n the n o v e l : the p a r a l l e l development, then the convergence, o f Edmond's and U r s u l e ' s c a r e e r s i n c o r r u p t i o n . Edmond'does not f o l l o w through the condemnation of h i s p a s s i o n s t h a t has r e s u l t e d from h i s rape of Mme Parangon, o f c o u r s e , because h i s p u r s u i t of U r s u l e and her a b d u c t o r l e a d s him t o P a r i s . He r e c o g n i z e s t h a t P a r i s breeds v i c e , f o r the anonymity people enjoy means t h a t " i l s ne r o u g i s s e n t presque jamais l e s uns devant l e s a u t r e s . " ( I I , 166) But t h i s r e c o g n i t i o n o f " l e s dangers de l a v i l l e " does not pre v e n t Edmond's p a s s i o n s from t a k i n g advantage of t h i s new freedom from the p r e s s u r e s o f p u b l i c o p i n i o n . Edmond, i n league w i t h Gaudet, succeeds i n r e s c u i n g U r s u l e from her a b d u c t o r , a marquis. U r s u l e ' s innocence remains b e h i n d , however, so Edmond f e e l s c a l l e d upon t o c h a l l e n g e the Marquis t o a d u e l . He t r i u m p h s ; and t h i s p r o v i d e s an oppor- t u n i t y f o r a new f l o u r i s h i n g of h i s p a s s i o n s . Edmond's generous t r e a t m e n t of h i s wounded a d v e r s a r y , and the i n t e r v e n t i o n o f 131 Mme Parangon not o n l y d i v e r t the p o t e n t i a l l y d i s a s t r o u s conse- quences of h i s i l l e g a l a c t , they g a i n him e n t r y i n t o the w o r l d o f marquis — and o f marquises. The charms of the M a r q u i s 1 w i f e (which Edmond has o c c a s i o n t o a p p r e c i a t e when he p a i n t s her i n the nude) and a m b i t i o n i n s p i r e Edmond t o undertake a new s e d u c t i o n . The Marquise i s amenable; so i s her husband, f o r U r s u l e shows s i g n s of b e i n g i n c l i n e d t o become h i s m i s t r e s s . As Gaudeitt e x p l a i n s U r s u l e *s r a p i d p r o g r e s s i n l i b e r t i n i s m , "Mon e n f a n t , des qu'une femme a goute des p l a i s i r s de l'amour, f u t - c e par v i o l e n c e , e l l e ne s a u r a i t p l u s r e s i s t e r a, l a t e n t a t i o n . " ( I I , 302) Edmond, t o o , i s i n c l i n e d t o be compre- hen d i n g o f an a c t t h a t r e v e r s e s h i s strenuous e f f o r t s t o save h i s s i s t e r ' s honor, even t o the p o i n t of enco u r a g i n g i t , f o r i t advances h i s own p r o j e c t s . "Ce n'est pas que j e n'eprouve une grande repugnance a v o i r ma soeur engagee dans une g a l a n t e r i e , " e x p l a i n s Edmond t o Gaudet, "Mais mon i n t r i g u e avec l a Marquise; l e s e f f e t s que j ' e n a t t e n d s ; ce que j e me propose de f a i r e pour ma soeur, a i d e de t e s sages a v i s , t o u t c e l a m ' e t o u r d i t s u r une c o n d u i t e , que j e s a i s t r e s b i e n qu'on t r o u v e r a i t t r e s c r i m i n e l l e , s i e l l e e t a i t connue." ( I I , 307-308) These f r i e n d l y p l a n s a r e r e a l i z e d . The Marquis conquers U r s u l e , and Edmond conquers the Marquise. But Edmond f a l l s f a r s h o r t of b e i n g a new paysan parvenu. At the v e r y moment of s u c c e s s , he w r i t e s t o Gaudet, Je s u i s heureux...et dans c e t i n s t a n t meme j e ne s u i s pas c o n t e n t . . . . T a i s e z - v o u s , chimeres de mon i m a g i n a t i o n ; v i e u x p r e j u g e s , d i s p a r a i s s e z pour j a m a i s ; ou l a i s s e z - m o i du moins quelques i n s t a n t s d'une j o i e pure. Qui, moi! j ' a i possede... E s t - c e b i e n t o i , Edmond? e t quand dans t o n v i l l a g e , t u 132 conduisais l e troupeau de l a maison paternelle, te serais-tu attendu au degre de glo i r e ou. 1'adorable Marquise t'a f a i t monter? . . . mes efforts pour m'exagerer mon bonheur sont i n u t i l e s ; i l devient un fardeau qui m'accable. En quel etat me v o i l a reduit! AhI dans mes jeunes annees, qui m'aurait d i t , — Tu corrompras l a femme d'un autre, et tu prostitueras ta soeur a ce meme homme dont tu corrompras l a femme! Ta propre soeur! . . . Won, je ne suis pas heureux! non, je ne l e suis pas! . . . Mais pardonne mes frequents retours aux prejuges de 1'education. I l s prennent quelquefois tant d'empire sur moi; i l s reviennent avec tant de f u r i e , que je suis oblige de leur ceder. Je ne te deguise r i e n ; je veux te rendre spectateur de mes combats et de ma v i c t o i r e . ( I l l , 4-5) The promised victory over his "old prejudices" i s not forthcoming. Repeated i n f i d e l i t i e s on the part of the Marquise offend them s u f f i c i e n t l y to cause him to discontinue his l i a i s o n "with her, and to try to reconvert Ursule, as well. .But this new defeat of l i b e r t i n i s m i s not a victory for v i r t u e , either. It might have been, i f Fanchette were there to f i l l the vacuum l e f t by the Marquise: "Je me jeterais dans ses bras; e l l e me consolerait de l a perte que je f a i s , et des ecarts de ma soeur; e l l e me garantirait d'un ecueil plus dangereux...que tous ceux ou j ' a i donnes." ( I l l , 13) The dangerous trap i s the one held out by the seductive appeal of Ursule he r s e l f . Ursule's career i n corruption has been marked by no such hesitations as Edmond's; for her, l i b e r t i n i s m i s a r e a l voca- t i o n . She i n fact mocks Edmond's timid experimentation with vice: " . . . mon frere est un f a i b l e courage; i l n'est pas de ces ames degagees qui s * elancant au-dela. des prejuges, bra.yent les erreurs communes; Je crois meme que sans son penchant au p l a i s i r , i l n'aurait pas encore f a i t l e premier 133 pas vers l e bel usage." ( I l l , 14) It i s she who causes Edmond to f a l l into the trap he so dreads, and narrates the event for the delectation of Gaudet: II faut que je vous conte une espieglerie que je l u i f i s l 1 a u t r e jour. II me prechait, et m'ennuyait. Je l'ecoutai longtemps: ma patience 1'encourage; i l continue. Je me leve, et vais l'embrasser: mes caresses l e derident. II me vient une i d e e . . . f o l l e , que l'envie d'humilier l e precheur me f i t suivre.... (Pierre R g g  lui-meme l a i s s e i c i une lacune assez considerable: i l est a presumer que ce q u ' i l a retranche ne pouvait pas etre mis utilement sous les yeux de sa famille.) Qu 1 Edmond merite bien d'etre l a f o l i e des femmesl En v e r i t e , sa prude cousine n'est pas de mauvais gout, et je crois que l a commere ne serait pas fachee d'avoir encore des pleurs a, verser, et une penitence a f a i r e . . . " ( I l l , 14-15) This i s not, of course, the sort of incest brought on by an excessive tenderness between blood r e l a t i v e s foreshadowed by the early novels — that variety w i l l be f u l l y developed i n Monsieur Nicolas. On the contrary, i t i s provoked here by an excess of sensuality, as Edmond indicates i n his description of his involvement: "En verite je ne sais ce que je suis n i ce que je veux, depuis quelques jours: ce n'est pas de 1'amour que j'eprouve; des desirs impetueux, effrenes, suffoquants ne sont pas de 1'amour: Je ne suis point jaloux; l e sentiment desordonne qui m'anime se f o r t i f i e en voyant mes rivaux . . . " ( I l l , 18) Edmond i s entrapped by his passions i n an immoral situation for which, for the f i r s t time, he can find no j u s t i f i c a t i o n , and he at l a s t begins to draw conclusions concerning his character: "Ah! mon coeur est absolument gate, corrompu; je l e reconnais; je me deteste, et ne vou±rais pas guerir de mon mall..." ( I l l , 19) In spite of this statement, however, he s t i l l entertains the i l l u s i o n that he can save himself by- returning once again to the idea of marrying Fanchette. He v i s i t s her, and i t does seem that sentiment i s s t i l l a l i v e i n him, for Ursule's s p e l l over him i s broken by Fanchette's gentle expression of regret at his and Ursule's waywardness: "ces mots ont ete jusqu'a mon coeur; l'objet coupable s' en est efface; 1'aimable Fanchette y a r'Sgne en souveraine. Transporte de joie de cet heureux changement, je me suis mis aux genoux de ma jeune d i v i n i t e . . . " ( I l l , 19) Fanchette agrees to marry Edmond, i n spite of his unworthiness, provided that Mme Parangon gives her consent. Before Mme Parangon's consent has time to a r r i v e , however, Gaudet and Ursule join forces to dash Edmond's l a s t hopes for reform. Gaudet again displays his tendency to think he knows what i s best for Edmond, when he writes to Ursule, "Empechons ce mariage, qui l e rendrait trop raisonnable, et par consequent aussi malheureux qu'incommode aux autres. Tu connais son f a i b l e , Pouponne; retiens l'oiseau pret a s'echapper en l u i faisant aimer sa cage." ( I l l , 20) Ursule carries out her mission by reaffirming her particular hold over Edmond, and by intercepting l e t t e r s from Mme Parangon to Edmond indicating her presence i n P a r i s . Edmond i s f i n a l l y freed from this s i t u a t i o n when Ursule marries a lowly type she fancies, and i s brutalized by him. Suitably enough, he i s the instrument of revenge of a disdained lover. Ursule's suffering, for which Edmond feels responsible, 135 since he has had a hand i n her corruption, and the news from Pierre that th e i r corruption i s causing their parents to waste away from shame, brings about a reaction i n Edmond that i s quite different from the one to which we have become accustomed. As he expresses his current f e e l i n g s , . . . je veux encore un degre a. mes maux; ma seule envie, c'est de braver l e malheur a son comble . . . Maudit soit l'amourI maudites soient l'amitie, l a nature! Un sentiment profond, affreux, me f a i t desirer de ne voi r que des horreurs, et ne gouter que des atr o c i t e s : mes songes ne me presentent que des crimes; je vois ceux qui les commettent enivres d'une joie barbare, et je 1'envie, ne l a pouvant partager... ( I l l , 39 -41) It i s clear that here we are witness to a rever s a l , or a change i n the action pattern of the novel. The la t e s t evidence of the destructiveness of his passions does not provoke i n Edmond a renewed commitment to v i r t u e , however temporary. On the contrary, his i n a b i l i t y to extricate himself from incest with his s i s t e r seems to have convinced him that although his passions make him miserable, he i s incapable of following the opposite course, the one dictated by his sentiments. Edmond's l a t e s t c r i s i s therefore breaks the cycle of impasses that has characterized the auction of the novel up to this point. His sentimental and passional motivations can no longer cause impasses by i n t e r f e r i n g with each other, because they have both been destroyed. Edmond can no longer entertain the i l l u s i o n that either pursuit i s l i k e l y to procure happiness for him. As he indicates i n the above-quoted expression of his attitudes, awareness of his i n a b i l i t y to r e a l i z e either of his values results i n a desperate attempt to deny their existence, to 136 a c t i v e l y pursue the iden t i t y his f a i l u r e appears to confer upon him: that of an unhappy s o c i a l outcast, even a criminal. Edmond f i r s t implements his w i l l to give up a l l construc- tive a c t i v i t i e s 'by k i l l i n g Ursule's husband. Then, as he describes his situation to Pier r e , tombe dans l e decouragement comme dans un profond abime, £ton fr e r e l erre chaque jour en insense; i l frequente les societes les plus v i l e s . . . les faineants, les escrocs, les f i l o u s , les voleurs l u i offrent des scenes qui l u i plaisent; i l aime a vo i r l'humanite criminelle et degradee prendre l e chemin de l'echafaud. ( I l l , 42) Edmond sinks for a long period into a vague "ocean de turpitude," only resurfacing from time to time to inform Gaudet of his state of mind with such comments as "je me complais sur mon. fumier," ( I I I , 46) and to reveal the sequel to Ursule's adventures. Edmond has encountered her i n a brothel, and as he writes to Gaudet, she i s "atteinte d'une maladie que tu devines aisement." ( I l l , 48) This denouement of Edmond's impasses could be an appro- priate resolution to the novel. We now know, and the hero knows, why " l a v i l l e est un dangereux sejour pour quiconque a l e coeur f a i t comme Edmond." (I, 219) We have seen that the c i t y i s not dangerous to Edmond because i t makes him discover i n himself a vocation for v i c e , but rather because i t s atmos- phere of freedom exposes him to awareness that of i t s e l f , his s e n s i b i l i t y places him neither thoroughly within, nor thoroughly without, society. In the reversal we see that he does not possess s u f f i c i e n t strength of character to choose, or even to effect a compromise, between the s o c i a l and asocial i n c l i n a t i o n s of his s e n s i b i l i t y . The only course open to him i s to try to annihilate his nature, or his s e n s i b i l i t y , by frequenting, and attempting to i d e n t i f y with, the miserable scum of society. Moral as i t i s , the desperation that has resulted from the emancipation of Edmond's passions i s apparently not a decisive enough conclusion for R e s t i f , who, as we know, l i k e s to t i e up his stories neatly at the end. Edmond's old con- f l i c t s are not, i n f a c t , thoroughly destroyed i n this r e v e r s a l . They are merely suppressed temporarily, and w i l l resurface for a more concrete resolution at a much l a t e r date. In order to reach this point, Edmond emerges from his despair, or his "n£ a n t " , as he c a l l s i t , and constructs a new l i f e for himself — so that when his old c o n f l i c t s do catch up with him, they are a l l the more acutely f e l t . As we s h a l l see, Porter i s j u s t i f i e d i n finding Restif g u i l t y of "creating a problematic cumulation of effects . . . The end of the novel i s distres s i n g l y melodramatic.""'"^ Porter attributes the weaknesses of the ending to the fact that the events i n the l a t t e r part of the novel, beginning with Edmond's a r r i v a l i n Paris, have much less basis i n Restif's actual experiences than they do i n the f i r s t part; he notes however, that the end does correspond to the author's state of mind: "That i s to say, he w i l l try to find i n his novel an equivalent i n action for the way he f e l t about himself after he had l o s t his self-respect." (p. 143) Restif's own g u i l t complex i s an interesting explanation for 1 0 0p. c i t . (above, note 2), p. 144. 138 the fact that Edmond w i l l be called upon to pay a much higher price for his sins than that of his present discouragement. The period of what Edmond c a l l s his "ferocite" gives way to a new l i n e of action, i n which the apparent defeat of his s e n s i b i l i t y i s turned to more constructive ends. This change i s brought about when Edmond f a l l s seriously i l l , and i s nursed back to physical and mental health by a warm-hearted pros t i t u t e , who i s "enjouee, semillante, legere, un peu plus qu'etourdie, et portant l e nom de Zephire, comme l e plus analogue: c'est 1'inconsequence, l a v i v a c i t e , l a petulance personnifiees . . . " ( I l l , 51) Zephire restores Edmond's interest i n love; hence, his interest i n l i f e . But love no longer has the same significance for him i t had before his period of defeatism. Appropriately enough, Zephire encourages Edmond to take a l i g h t view of women and love. Love i s now more a hobby than a full-time a c t i v i t y for Edmond; he no longer allows i t to become the serious involve- ment that has caused him so much soul-searching as to i t s significance for his moral i d e n t i t y . G-audet i s enchanted with this evolution i n Edmond's attitudes, for they now promise to lend themselves to Edmond's advancement i n the world. Although Edmond has not acquired his new sense of freedom concerning love through mature r e f l e c t i o n , but through exhaustion r e s u l t i n g from the c o n f l i c t s his pre- occupation with love has caused him, the desired effect i s attained; love now. 7  leaves Edmond time and energy for more 139 profitable pursuits. As Gaudet appreciates the situation, . . . tu vois a. present l'amour, non comme on 1'envisage en commencant a. vivre, mais t e l q u ' i l est reellement: l'amour n'est qu'une agitation violente, a. laquelle l e repos du coeur est preferable . . . Tu connais les delices de l'amour sous toutes les formes possibles; i l ne t'en imposera plus . . . a present, tu commanderas en maitre a l'objet de tes desirs. Te voila. dans un age ou. l e sang-froid est necessaire; i l est temps que 1'ambition succede au gout du p l a i s i r . Je veux te f a i r e un sort, un nom, et j'espere te porter aussi l o i n q u ' i l sera possible . . . ( I l l , 102) We note here that Gaudet i s changing his tune. His concept of the proper use of reason has been considerably- modified. Rather than serving to construct a personal ethic that does justice to what i s most essential i n both nature and society, reason now serves as a weapon against society i n the name of ambition. As Gaudet says, " . . . de quoi nous s e r v i r a i t l e s lumieres de l a raison, s i ce n'est pour nous f a i r e p r o f i t e r de 1'instinct de tous les etres? Je te l e repete, rapportons tout a. nous; profitons des vices et des vertus de ceux qui nous environnent; de leurs lumieres, et de leur ignorance . . . " (III, 110) Gaudet's understanding of re c i p r o c i t y has thus evolved. Reciprocity no longer l i m i t s emancipation from the laws of society, but rather j u s t i f i e s taking advantage of i t s vices: "Cela se f a i t . Depuis longtemps, je te recommande d'envisager l e s choses qui se font ordinairement, comme legitimes . . . on d i t , on f a i t , on c r o i t , on peut, toutes l e s choses qui commencent par une de ces phrases, sont permises, fussent-elles defendues par toutes l e s l o i s . " ( I l l , 210) It would seem, then, that Gaudet has reserved exposition of the 140 cynicism of his philosophy for the moment when the defeat of Edmond's moral prejudices, aided by Gaudet's o r i g i n a l , more noble philosophy of nature, would allow him to accept i t . Edmond indeed appears ready to enter into Gaudet's views. His version of Gaudet's philosophy i s , do unto others what others would do unto you i f they were strong enough: "Tachons done, mon cher, comme tu me l'as d i t une f o i s , de nous maintenir au rang des mangeurs; l e role des manges n'est f a i t que pour les f a i b l e s et les sots." ( I l l , 120) Yet there i s some i n d i - cation that the new s e l f Edmond has discovered i s not to be his permanent i d e n t i t y . Although the passional aspect of his former s e l f has become inactive; his sentimental inc l i n a t i o n s have not been repressed. He i s frequently made aware of t h i s , as when he catches a glimpse of Mme Parangon i n Par i s . He i s upset by this "vision," as he confides to Gaudet: "Je fus s i trouble de l a v i s i o n dont je t ' a i parle . . . que de l a nuit je n'ai pu gouter de repos. 0 nuit c r u e l l e l que de tourments tu viens de renouveller!" ( I I I , 84) He i s further shaken when he subsequently receives a reproachful l e t t e r from her i n d i - cating that she has found Ursule, and has taken her away for a cure of her corruption and i t s effects: "Mon coeur pal p i t e , et ma main tremble...La foudre est moins t e r r i b l e . . . l a mort est moins redoutable que l e reproche de l a vertu . . . Je suis aterre...." ( I l l , 90) The "sombre nuage" brought over Edmond's s p i r i t s by this experience i s temporary, however; i t does not divert him from pursuing his wordly ambitions. After discouraging some i n f e r i o r projects Edmond undertakes, 141 such as a c t i n g and a u t h o r s h i p , Gaudet succeeds i n p l a c i n g Edmond i n the ranks of the "mangeurs" by a r r a n g i n g h i s m a r r i a g e t o a r i c h and u g l y o l d l a d y — and he g i v e s Edmond moral support by m a r r y i n g the woman's daughter, who i s a l s o w e l l advanced i n age. Edmond does not share the a p p r e c i a t i o n of the g r o t e s q u e - ness of the s i t u a t i o n t h a t Gaudet d i s p l a y s when he says o f h i s w i f e , " . . . depu i s n o t r e mariage, j ' a u r a i s ete deux f o i s t e n t e de 1'embrasser, sans c e t t e malheureuse dent s a f f r a n e e q u i l u i s o r t de l a bouche, et c e t t e g r o s s e v e r r u e q u ' e l l e a sur l e nez, q u i n ' i m i t e pas mai une corne de r h i n o c e r o s . " ( I l l , 225) But the d i s g u s t Edmond e x p e r i e n c e s a t h a v i n g t o " c a r e s s e r c e l a , " as he d e s c r i b e s h i s r e l a t i o n s w i t h h i s w i f e , i s compensated f o r by the f a c t t h a t b o t h of the women soon d i e , and Edmond's improved f i n a n c i a l c i r c u m s t a n c e s p e r m i t him t o become a m a g i s t r a t e . He w i l l not' l o n g enjoy h i s i n f l u e n t i a l p o s i t i o n , however. Z e p h i r e , who has found h er own way t o v i r t u e , a p p e a l s t o Mme Parangon t o s i e z e the o p p o r t u n i t y t o marry Edmond (she i s now a widow), and thus save him from f u r t h e r i n f l u e n c e by Gaudet: " . . . i l s ' a g i t d'un malade, d'un e s p r i t subjugue; i l f a u t l e g u e r i r , l ' a r r a c h e r a l a s e d u c t i o n , I'empecher de nous echapper, ou p l u t o t empecher q u ' i l ne s'echappe a l u i - meme." ( I l l , 238) Mme Parangon i s w i l l i n g , and she i s o p t i m i s t i c o f s u c c e s s : " E n f i n , i l p a r a i t que l a d i v i n e j u s t i c e e s t s a t i s f a i t e . . . " ( I l l , 239) toe Parangon does succeed i n c a u s i n g Edmond to shed h i s v a r n i s h of c y n i c i s m and f i n d a t l a s t h i s t r u e s e l f ; but she does so o n l y i n d i r e c t l y , and not a t a l l i n the way she had i n t e n d e d . 142 Justice, divine or otherwise, i s by no means s a t i s f i e d . Gaudet and Edmond are accused by re l a t i v e s of the deceased of having murdered their wives. During their arrest, the i n s t a - b i l i t y of a l i f e style based on the detachment of either Edmond or Gaudet i s exposed i n spectacular fashion. The collapse of their world i s brought about invo l u n t a r i l y by Mme Parangon, who fai n t s when Edmond i s about to be led off to prison. Edmond, who believes she i s dying, k i l l s several guards who try to prevent him from rushing to her aid: Un l i o n en fureur est moins t e r r i b l e . — Ah! monstres, s ' e s t - i l eerie, hommes laches et v i l s , vous ne me permettez pas de l a secourir! . . . I I s'est empare d'une bayonette; et en un c l i n d ' o e i l , i l en a poignarde t r o i s . . . ( I V , 5) Gaudet then joins the fray: M. Gaudet, cet homme prudent jusqu'alors, qui avait repondu avec l e plus grand sang-froid, les choses les plus raisonnables quand on 1'avait arrete, M. Gaudet a perdu l a raison: et soit que des craintes bien fondees l u i fissent apprehender les regards severes de l a jus t i c e ; soit que l e c i e l las de ses crimes.... Se voyant abandonne de ses gardes, qui tous s'etaient precipites pour s a i s i r Edmond, i l est tombe sur eux par derriere, en a desarme un, et sans leur donner l e temps de se reconnaitre, i l a f a i t mordre l a poussiere a, quatre hommes de 1'escouade, a 1'exempt, et au commissaire. ( I V , 5) When Edmond proceeds to stab Zephire by mistake i n his frenzied defense of Mme Parangon, Gaudet, "effraye de ce coup", aids him to escape and stays behind to delay pursuit. Edmond i s subsequently recaptured, however, and the two face t r i a l . ' They are acquitted of the murder of their wives, but Gaudet i s condemned to death for his murder of the guards. Since Edmond does not appear to be a hardened criminal (he t r i e s to take the blame for a l l the crimes, "assurant q u ' i l croyait les avoir 143 tous commis, et q u ' i l n 1 e t a i t pas probable que son ami, homme ras s i s et raisonnable, se fut porte a cet exces." .IV, 14) he i s only sentenced to the galleys after being obliged to witness Gaudet's execution — or rather the execution of Gaudet's dead body. Gaudet manages to carry his refusal to submit to society to the end by stabbing himself just before he i s to mount the s c a f f o l d , saying, " l i s ne me tueront pas, et je f e r a i mon sort — ." (IV, 16) Edmond's sentence to the galleys i s successfully appealed by his fr i e n d s , but he refuses to return to them, and as he l a t e r explains his reasons, J'erre depuis t r o i s ans, et depuis t r o i s ans je me punis . . . aves-vous pu croire qu'en me soustrayant au chatiment, vous me soustrairiez a l a peine? Avez-vous pense que j'abuserais de vos bontes . . . Qui, moi! je vous aurais associe un infame forcat! en passant dans les rues, par les chemins, on m'aurait montre avec vous, et l'on aurait d i t : Le v o i l a ! Ce mot n'est r i e n , c'est l a conscience de c e l u i dont on l e d i t qui l e rend foudroyant....Non . . . je ne dois plus etre heureux . . . (IV, 43) It i s evident that the arrest scene has caused another r e v e r s a l . Character t r a i t s of both Gaudet and Edmond are brought into the open that make i t impossible for them to pursue the action l i n e sustained by their cynicism. It i s Edmond's old sentimental s e l f that re-emerges i n his response to the threat to Mme Parangon, who has been the . most constant object of his tenderness. Melodramatically extreme as this expression of his sentimental i n c l i n a t i o n s may appear, we have to admire i t s s u i t a b i l i t y to his character, and the devious way i n which i t leads to a decisive victory 144 for v i r t u e . Edmond has been well-established as a creature of extremes, and as a man whose sentimental extreme can never reach active expression under ordinary circumstances. The violent explosion of his sentimentality i n the arrest scene therefore has a certain appropriateness to his character; and i t s very violence d e f i n i t i v e l y destroys the motivations that have separated him from virtue throughout his career. Edmond's violence not only points up the a r t i f i c i a l i t y of the detachment and indifference that have permitted him to play the role of the cynic, i t also leads to a destruction of his passional motivations that i s more decisive than the discouragement that followed his incest with Ursule. The fact that his sentiments have at l a s t become active , only to destroy or seriously damage the i r objects (he believes he has k i l l e d Zephire, and i s responsible for Gaudet's death and the eternal anguish of Mme Parangon), w i l l cause Edmond to reject — i n retrospect, since i t has already become inactive — the aspect of his temperament that has led him to the present a r t i f i c i a l s i t u a t i o n , which has provoked such a perverted expression of his better nature. We may say, therefore, that Edmond's violence, although i t happens to be directed against representatives of the s o c i a l order, i s i n fact a spontaneous and rather misguided revolt against himself, or against the false situation into which he has allowed himself to be l e d , rather than a revolt against society. His fundamental respect for society i s indicated by the fact that he l a t e r demands punishment at the hands of the 145 law, i n contrast to Gaudet's refusal to accept such punishment. For Gaudet, the carnage of the arrest scene has a rather di f f e r e n t significance than i t has for Edmond. We need not attribute his seconding of Edmond i n the attack on the guards to either panic or Providence, as does the witness of the episode. His p a r t i c i p a t i o n , and his l a t e r decision to stay- behind so as to cover Edmond's escape, are perhaps i n part motivated by s o l i d a r i t y with his friend and d i s c i p l e . But the situa t i o n also releases an aspect of Gaudet's personality that exposes the a r t i f i c i a l i t y of his cynical l i f e s t y l e , as i t does for Edmond. But' for Gaudet, that l i f e style i s not a r t i f i c i a l because i t i s d i r e c t l y opposed to his fundamental nature; i t i s a r t i f i c i a l because i t i s not a completely frank expression of his true nature. Gaudet reveals that behind his apparently detached and coldly r a t i o n a l exploitation of the vices of society for enjoyment or p r o f i t , there l i e s a much more v i o - l e n t l y and emotionally a n t i - s o c i a l a g r e s s i v i t y . He does much more k i l l i n g i n this episode than i s necessary to save Edmond, and he accompanies his blows with murmured comments such as "meurs, infame" (IV, 6), as i f he had found the most accurate expression of his mission i n l i f e . Although murder of agents of the s o c i a l order may be a f a i t h f u l representation of his true f e e l i n g s , Gaudet does not seem to consider i t a viable alternative to attacking society from within. His expression of his w i l l to stay behind while Edmond escapes suggests awareness that i n the present exposure of his true s e l f , he has reached a dead-end i n his career as 146 an effective a n t i - s o c i a l i n d i v i d u a l , and that the end of his career i s the end of his l i f e ; for unlike Edmond, he has no alternative identity to adopt. "Sauve-toi," he says to Edmond, "tu peux vivre encore: pour moi, je touche au bout de l a carriere — " ( I V , 6) Gaudet makes i t clear that i n renouncing his career, he i s not repudiating his fundamental defiance of society. He i n fact attempts to reaffirm his revolt against s o c i a l authority by stabbing himself then and there, before he can be captured. The fact that the attempt f a i l s , and he thus l i v e s to face execution, but provides him with an opportunity to express his defiance of society i n more spectacular fashion by k i l l i n g himself under the eyes of the public executioner. He further- more prepares this ultimate manifestation of his w i l l to t o t a l l y dissociate himself from society by expressing verbally his refusal to accept the criminal i d e n t i t y conferred upon him by public and l e g a l opinion: " . . . les homines peuvent bien declarer que t e l de leurs semblables est f l e t r i , mais non l e f l e t r i r . " ( I V , 16) Both Edmond and Gaudet thus arrive at the end of their careers as cynics, and Edmond i s l e f t alone to create a new l i f e for himself. He f i r s t affirms h i s new-found sentimental i d e n t i t y by punishing himself for a l l of his past crimes against morality, and i n this he provides support for Robert Mauzi's point that "Si l a vertu est source de bonheur pour l'ame qui s'abandonne a sa douce effusion, e l l e ravage et torture epouvantablement 1'a.me r e t i v e q u i s'y r e f u s e . Le remords 11 d e v i e n t a i n s i l e s i g n e n e g a t i f de l a v e r t u . " The f i r s t t h r e e y e a r s of Edmond's wandering, f o l l o w i n g h i s r e l e a s e from p r i s o n , a r e devoted t o d o i n g penance a t the scenes of h i s p r o g r e s s i v e c o r r u p t i o n , i n r e c o g n i t i o n of the f a c t t h a t h i s p r e s e n t s t a t u s as an "infame f o r c a t " i s the end r e s u l t of h i s o r i g i n a l e m a n c i p a t i o n from moral p r e j u d i c e s . He s t a r t s h i s p i l g r i m a g e , i n f a c t , w i t h an i n c o g n i t o v i s i t t o the f a m i l y farm, as i f t o acknowledge t h a t s e p a r a t i o n from h i s f a m i l y was the f i r s t cause of h i s s e p a r a t i o n from v i r t u e . There, he meets w i t h a r e c e p t i o n t h a t g r a t i f i e s h i s d e s i r e f o r pun- ishment. As he w r i t e s to P i e r r e , Avant h i e r j ' a i b a i s e l e s e u i l de t a p o r t e ; j e me s u i s p r o s t e r n e devant l a demeure de nos v e n e r a b l e s p a r e n t s . Je t ' a i vu; et l e s s a n g l o t s m'ont s u f f o q u e . Ton c h i e n e s t venu pour me mordre; i l a r e c u l e en h u r l a n t , des q u ' i l m'a eu s e n t i , comme s i j'eusse ete une bete f e r o c e : t u l ' a s sans doute pense toi-meme; t u as' l a n c e une p i e r r e ; e l l e m'a a t t e i n t : c ' e s t l a premiere de mon s u p p l i c e . . . . (IV, 42) The moment when p o s i t i v e commitment t o v i r t u e w i l l succeed Edmond's d e t a i l e d r e j e c t i o n of e v e r y t h i n g t h a t has se p a r a t e d him from i t i s s t i l l f a r o f f . H i s p e r i o d of e x p i a t i o n i s i n f a c t p r o l o n g e d by an exaggerated r e v o l t a g a i n s t p a s s i o n and i t s e f f e c t s . U r s u l e has m a r r i e d the Marqu i s , f o r the sake of t h e i r son, and when Edmond sees them t o g e t h e r , he b e l i e v e s she has r e t u r n e d t o v i c e . Under the i n f l u e n c e of a b l i n d r a ge, he k i l l s h e r , thus a d d i n g s o r o r i c i d e t o h i s l i s t of s i n s ^ L ' Idee du bonheur au X V I I I e s i e c l e ( P a r i s , I 9 6 0 ) , pp. 617-618. 148 requiring punishment. The period of expiation i s arduous, and Providence has a hand i n t h i s . Edmond loses the arm that k i l l e d Ursule when he i s b i t t e n by a poisonous snake. He next goes off to Canada to l i v e with the eskimos, whose barbaric l i f e style — they are parricides — suits the state of his soul. He eventually returns to France, but does not immediately y i e l d to the urging of his friends, who have constantly believed, that he i s more "malheureux" than "coupable", to join the closely-knit virtuous society they have formed i n his absence. Their society i s so closely k n i t , i n f a c t , that Mme Parangon's and Edmond's daughter, and Zephire's and Edmond's son, have been innocently encouraged by Zephire to marry. Their incest i s , i n Mme Parangon's opinion, part of God's punishment for her si n s . Edmond waits to jo i n the virtuous society of his friends u n t i l blindness and impotence assure the permanency of his reje c t i o n of passional motivations. Shortly before his return, he writes, "Je suis sans passions; l a source de l a plus extreme de toutes est retranchee; . . . meprisez 1'ombre d'un homme qui se survit a lui-meme; et surtout apprenez que ce q u ' i l vient de perdre, ce n'est pas de son choix, mais l a suite de ses anciens debordements." (IV, 133-134) A tender reunion with Mme Parangon, his friends, and his various ,,G>:ffspring f i n a l l y takes place, and Edmond's return to virtue i s solemnized by marriage to Mme Parangon. But the happiness Edmond has struggled for so long to atta i n i s ephemeral. When his nephew, the son of Ursule and the Marquis, arrives 149 to j oin the f e s t i v i t i e s , Edmond i s run over by his carriage — the one i n which he k i l l e d Ursule. Here ends Edmond's story. According to Pierre, the moral i s as follows: Mes enfants, v o i l a d'etranges evenementsl Je vous les a i mis sous les yeux, non pour s a t i s f a i r e une cur i o s i t e vaine, mais pour que vous p r o f i t i e z des lumieres qu'ils vous ont procurees. Le crime ne reste jamais sans punition; Manon a ete punie; M. Parangon aussi par une maladie douloureuse; et Gaudet plus que tous les autres: D'Arras a p e r i ; Ursule fut chatiee de l a main du Seigneur; l a respectable Femme fut a f f l i g e e par c e l u i qui l u i avait plu; Edmond enfin plus f a i b l e que coupable, a ete t r a i t e selon ses oeuvres: M. l e Marquis de  s x x  lui-meme, a i n s i que sa premiere femme sont tombes sous l a verge de l'Ange Exterminateur. Dieu est juste. (IV, 151) We may agree with Pierre that God deals out the punishments i n t h i s novel, i f he means that i n addition to causing Edmond to lose his arm, and to be run over by the carriage i n which he k i l l e d Ursule, God i s also responsible for the fact that emancipation from s o c i a l morality has inherent effects upon the happiness of the characters. Edmond's plot has p a r a l l e l l e d the internal sentimental plots of La Confidence necessaire and La F i l l e naturelle by developing the dynamic role of passion i n human a c t i v i t y , and has gone beyond them by showing that of themselves, passional motivations are contrary to happiness because they lead the indivi d u a l to commit acts that offend his own s o c i a l i n s t i n c t s . The sharpened focus of the internal sentimental plot on the i n d i v i d u a l , rather than on society, thus enlarges upon the Restivian conception of human nature. Edmond's plot exposes the a r t i f i c i a l i t y of the e a r l i e r presentation of a human nature dominated by sentiment; but i t does not f a l l into the opposite 150 extreme, and affirm that man i s a passional creature who requires only passional s a t i s f a c t i o n s . Instead, Le Paysan perverti offers a v i s i o n of human nature as composed of two opposing and i r r e c o n c i l i a b l e elements, sentiment and passion; passion dominates acts, and sentiment dominates attitudes. For t h i s reason, we assume that i n affirming that Edmond's story w i l l , of i t s e l f , provide a useful negative lesson i n morality for his children, Pierre means that i t w i l l encourage them to stay at home. Edmond's story has improved upon the morality of the e a r l i e r novels i n showing the inherent d e t r i - mental effects of passion; but at the same time i t has shown more c l e a r l y than ever the d i f f i c u l t y of following the course dictated by sentiment. The most sentiment can do to combat passion i n Edmond i s to prevent him from finding f u l l s a t i s - f a ction i n expression of his sensuality. When this f i n a l l y results i n discouragement with his passional motivations, sentiment s t i l l does not become the basis of his a c t i v i t y . Edmond's enslavement by his passions has undermined his c o n f i - dence i n his a b i l i t y to be virtuous, so he gives up the e f f o r t . His sentiments only become active again when they are stimu- lated by the unusual circumstances of the arrest scene. The implication of the e a r l i e r novels that human nature must-be r i g i d l y conditioned i f the individual i s to become a thoroughly s o c i a l , hence happy, creature, i s thus f u l l y j u s t i f i e d by the hero of Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . Pierre seems to r e a l i z e , i n f a c t , that the only way to avoid a re p e t i t i o n of the disasters that have resulted from the f l o u r i s h i n g of Edmond's passions i s to 151 confine the passions of his children to arid s o i l , where they cannot develop. He appends to the novel a project for a communistic organization of the family that promises to leave i t s members l i t t l e time or privacy for extra-curricular a c t i v i t i e s . The plots of the other characters provide variations on the moral we have extracted from Edmond's p l o t . We have d i s - cussed the other characters mainly when they have influenced Edmond's moral-sentimental education i n some way, and i t has been clear that they do not serve merely as catalysts for Edmond's c o n f l i c t s . The multiple point of view of the epistolary form has given us insights into the attitudes of some of the secondary characters, and has permitted us to see that they, too, have experienced, i n various ways, the obstacles that the i r own natures oppose to happiness. Edmond, i n his turn, has a d e f i n i t e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n exposing them to this experi- ence. The contrasting ways i n which Edmond and Ursule respond to the corruptive influence of c i t y l i f e supports the tenet of the e a r l i e r novels, Adele i n p a r t i c u l a r , that women are led astray by their sensuality even more easily than are men. Unlike Edmond, Ursule i s contaminated on the l e v e l of act and attitude by acquaintance with the delights of sensuality. Her headlong progress into corruption i s not retarded by a l i n g e r i n g attachment to v i r t u e . In the incest episode, where the careers of brother and s i s t e r converge, we have had occasion to compare their attitudes d i r e c t l y . Ursule throws herself body and soul into the seduction of her brother, whereas Edmond struggles 152 d e s p e r a t e l y a g a i n s t t h i s u l t i m a t e entrapment by h i s l o w e r i n s t i n c t s . T h e i r c o n t r a s t i n g a t t i t u d e s toward t h e i r own c o r r u p t i o n a r e e v i d e n t as w e l l i n t h e i r p a r a l l e l i n v o l v e m e n t s w i t h the IVIarquis and h i s w i f e . At the v e r y moment of consummating h i s l i a i s o n w i t h the Marquise, Edmond has d e f i n i t e mental r e s e r - v a t i o n s ; but once U r s u l e d e c i d e s t o become the Ma r q u i s ' m i s t r e s s , she devotes h e r s e l f t o making her power over him complete. I n league w i t h the Marqu i s e , she p l o t s the f i n a n c i a l r u i n of her l o v e r . I n U r s u l e , v a n i t y and a m b i t i o n combine w i t h s e n s u a l i t y t o r e n d e r h er e m a n c i p a t i o n from v i r t u e more complete than Edmond's. These c o n t r a s t s come out more s t r o n g l y , o f c o u r s e , i n the n o v e l t h a t develops her c a r e e r i n d e t a i l , La Paysarme p e r v e r t i e (1780-83), and more o p p o r t u n i t y f o r d i r e c t comparison between the e x p e r i e n c e s of Edmond and U r s u l e i s p r o v i d e d when t h e i r s t o r i e s a r e combined i n Le Paysan et l a Paysanne p e r v e r t i s (1784-1787). I n k e e p i n g w i t h the i n a c t i v i t y of the s o c i a l i n s t i n c t i n U r s u l e , i t t a k e s something r a t h e r more t a n g i b l e than moral a n g u i s h t o make her renounce h er s e n s u a l m o t i v a t i o n s . L i k e Edmond, she does not commit h e r s e l f t o v i r t u e u n t i l her p a s s i o n s become i n a c t i v e . But they do not become i n a c t i v e t h r ough d i s - couragement, as they do i n Edmond; they cease t o f u n c t i o n when v e n e r e a l d i s e a s e causes h er extreme p h y s i c a l d i s i n t e g r a t i o n . P a s t 1 i n d u l g e n c e i n h i s p a s s i o n s u l t i m a t e l y has the same e f f e c t on Edmond, of c o u r s e , but i t p l a y s o n l y a secondary r o l e i n h i s r e f o r m . I t a s s u r e s the permanence of a r e f o r m t h a t has a l r e a d y been accomplished by the r e v o l t of h i s s e n t i m e n t a l 153 s e l f . In contrast, Ursule i s only receptive to the beneficent influence of virtue, i n the shape of Mme Parangon, when she i s rendered u t t e r l y helpless by disease. Under Mme Parangon 1s care, Ursule recovers beauty, virtue, and happiness, and she inv i t e s Edmond to take this as indication that he, too, can s t i l l be saved: Ose m'imiter, Edmond, frere trop cher et trop coupable, ose te confier a l a Vertu! Depuis que je respire l e meme a i r qu'elle, mon ame s'est epuree; depuis que je suis ses traces, l e gouffre du crime s'est ferme sous mes pas . . . Je trouve une douceur inexprimable, inattendue (car je n'aurais jamais ose l'esperer) dans l a vie pai s i b l e que je mene . . . ( I l l , 93) Ursule's peace i s of short duration, however. Her new sense of moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y causes her to marry the Marquis for the sake of their son, the f r u i t of her abduction by the Marquis, and this means that she continues to pay for her f i r s t departure from virtue, involuntary as i t was, with the unhappiness, of being tied to a man who has not given up his penchant for vice. And l a t e r , of course, she experiences, i n more v i v i d fashion, the impossibility of thoroughly cas ting- off her former identity, when Edmond k i l l s her, believing she has returned to corruption. Ursule's plot therefore supplements the pessimistic implications of Edmond's career by suggesting that women have even a greater capacity than men for self-destruction through corruption. It also shows the f u l l extent to which the individual i s condemned to unhappiness by his passions. The happiness Edmond acquires as a resu l t of his t o t a l commitment to v irtue i s cut short when he i s run over by the carriage i n which he k i l l e d his s i s t e r ; but the l i f e Ursule leads following her reform shows, i n more effective fashion, the far-reaching consequences of passional motivations. Even when the d i f f i c u l t task of reform i s accomplished, past sins against virtue con- tinue to have detrimental effects on happiness. The plots of the other important women i n Edmond's l i f e , Manon and Mme Parangon, have similar implications, although they mitigate, on one l e v e l , the fatalism of Edmond's and Ursule's p l o t s . The experiences of these two women suggest' that i t i s i n fact given to some in d i v i d u a l s , even to women, to r e s i s t the p u l l of their sensual natures, and obey the dictates of thei r sentimental attachment to v i r t u e . After a f i r s t confrontation with concrete evidence that the paths into which they are led by thei r sensuality are opposed to happiness, both Manon and Mme Parangon reaffirm their v i r t u e . When Manon f a l l s i n love with Edmond, she discovers the superior satisfactions offered by sentimental values, and this causes her to reject the pleasures of her i l l i c i t l i a i s o n with Parangon, to the point of considering them a form of torture. As she describes the evolution i n her attitudes provoked by her love for Edmond, " . . . mon gout devint de l a tendresse. Ce fut alors que l a vertu commenca de rentrer dans mon coeur avec l e veritable amour . . . quel supplice, que d'aimer, avec passion, et d'etre force' de se l i v r e r . . . . " ( I , 187) New-found modesty prevents Manon from being more e x p l i c i t concerning the nature of the torture, but i t i s clear that she means the attentions of Parangon. Manon eventually manages to free 155 herself from Parangon's influence, and devotes herself to being a virtuous wife, i n hopes of earning Edmond's love and respect. Edmond f o r t i f i e s Mme Parangon's virtue i n a rather d i f - ferent way. When he awakens i n her a passional i n c l i n a t i o n , and leads her to express i t , he causes her to take energetic defensive measures against further temptation. 'We have sug- gested that although Edmond feels he violates Mme Parangon, she i s not precisely an innocent and unwilling victim of Edmond's passion. Her sensual response to Edmond i s evident from the f i r s t moment she expresses her penchant for him, and during the c r u c i a l scene, she does not do a l l she could to help Edmond ret a i n his s e l f - c o n t r o l . During the period of delirium that follows the compromise of her v i r t u e , she further reveals the true nature of her attr a c t i o n to Edmond. 'As he says, "Dans les plus violents acces de son d e l i r e , s i je 1' ein'brasse, e l l e s o u r i t , me presse contre son coeur, et semble m'inviter a renouveler mon offense...." ( I I , 152) Edmond does not respond to the i n v i t a t i o n . On the contrary, concern for her health causes him to solemnly promise to respect her virtue i n future, and this r e c a l l s her to her virtuous s e l f . Reason returns, and with i t , a renewed determination to r e s i s t Edmond. Her f i r s t act, reports Edmond, "a ete de me donner 1'ordre de s o r t i r de sa presence, et de ne l a v o i r qu'avec tout l e monde." (I , 153) Knowledge that her nature disposes her to betray her principles does not, therefore, cause Mme Parangon to question their v a l i d i t y ; i t inspires her, rather, to reform her nature. And unlike Edmond, she implements that w i l l . 156 Manon and Mme Parangon thus triumph over th e i r sensuality with r e l a t i v e f a c i l i t y , i n comparison to Edmond and Ursule. But th e i r fates prolong the suggestion of Edmond's and Ursule's plots that reform cannot undo the damage to happiness caused by offenses against v i r t u e . Manon's project for happiness i s condemned to f a i l u r e by the fact that her f i r s t e f f o r t to ensnare Edmond i s an expression of her sensual nature, i n that i t takes the form of seduction, and i s designed to give her greater security i n her l i a i s o n with Parangon. In thus a t t r a c - t i n g Edmond by awakening his sensuality, she prepares f r u s - t r a t i o n of her subsequent desire for a stable sentimental relationship with him, by creating for herself a husband who i s dominated by his passions. As we have seen, she prefers death to this s i t u a t i o n . Mme Parangon i s also rendered permanently unhappy by her i l l i c i t love, although i t no longer separates her from virtue by manifesting i t s passional nature. She i s s t i l l emotionally involved with a man who i s dominated by his passions, and this destroys the contentment of her return to v i r t u e . Her love for Edmond makes her sensitive to the effects of his continuing indulgence of his passions, which not only separates them, and causes Edmond's own unhappiness, i t also serves as a constant reminder of Mme Parangon's own flawed v i r t u e . She finds a v i v i d image to describe this s i t u a t i o n to Edmond: . . . ne croyez pas que l a certitude que vous etes a v i l i , degrade, ne croyez pas qu'elle vous rende odieux a c e l l e que vous offensez; non, mon cousin; par un juste decret sans doute, l e C i e l me condamne au supplice de ceux qu'on l i e avec un cadavre i n f e c t ; et cette horrible image, 157 qui me poursuit en tout l i e u , qui ne m'abandonne pas un instant, est l a punition de l a faute involontaire que j ' a i f a i t e , de prendre pour vous des sentiments,.... q u ' i l faut bien qui soient criminels. ( I I , 181-182) Although we consider Edmond's death, at the very moment his reaffirmed virtue permits their union, rather loosely connected to his past s i n s , i t i s for Mme Parangon the ultimate way i n which she i s rendered unhappy by a love that involves her i n the effects of Edmond's passions. Edmond and .the women i n his l i f e therefore share a common experience of the involuntary crimes that human nature commits against happiness. Gaudet i s subject to the same experience, on a rather different l e v e l . Like the other characters, he commits acts that violate the tenets of s o c i a l morality. But i n so doing he follows reason, instead of passion. He professes r a t i o n a l independence from the aspects of human nature that have caused c o n f l i c t s and unhappiness i n the other characters: the tyranny of the passions, on the one hand, and the tyranny of emotional attachment to v i r t u e , on the other. And Pierre suggests that Gaudet i s punished, "plus que tous les autres," (see above, p. 149) by the ignominy of public condemnation, because he i s the most volu n t a r i l y a n t i - s o c i a l character i n Edmond's world. It would seem that although one cannot acquire happiness through s e n s i b i l i t y , i n the absence of outside support, reason i s even more inconducive to happiness. Reason leads the individual to commit a n t i - s o c i a l acts, which eventually expose him to s o c i a l r e t a l i a t i o n . In the case of Gaudet, however, this only occurs when reason ceases to 158 function, when he loses his s e l f - c o n t r o l i n the arrest episode. Gaudet•s error, the act that leads to his destruction, i s not his disrespect for s o c i a l laws, or even his exploitation of the vices of society, but rather his f a i l u r e to observe the l i m i t s of his own philosophy, the conditions upon which i t s efficacy for happiness depends. As he had told Edmond, he must li b e r a t e himself from s o c i a l laws, "sans troubler 1'ordre po l i t i q u e , et sans t ' a t t i r e r de l a part des autres individus une repulsion desagreable." ( I I , 199) When Gaudet's s e l f - possession gives way to a passionate outburst of violence i n the arrest scene, i n response to Edmond's own violence, he does expose himself to s o c i a l r e p r i s a l . But he does not take this as indication that i n being an a n t i - s o c i a l i n d i v i d u a l , he has acted against his own best i n t e r e s t s . He f e e l s , rather, that he i s incapable of implementing adequately an a n t i - s o c i a l i d e a l that involves self-domination i n the interest of exploiting the weaknesses of others. The sangfroid he so highly prizes i s not proof against the provocations of external circumstances. And since reform, commitment to v i r t u e , does not offer a l i f e s t yle that suits his nature any better, he prefers to r e t i r e from l i f e — i n a way that leaves no doubt that his fundamentally a n t i - s o c i a l attitude subsists, even i f he can no longer l i v e that at t i t u d e . Gaudet's plot thus f a i l s to show the inherent effects on happiness of r a t i o n a l emancipation from s o c i a l morality, even i f this emancipation goes beyond construction of a personal ethic of independence, and i s used as a weapon against society. But Gaudet' s s t o r y r e j o i n s those of the o t h e r c h a r a c t e r s i n showing t h a t the i n d i v i d u a l i s unable t o escape the d e s t r u c t i v e c a p r i c e s of h i s p a s s i o n s , whether they t a k e the form of sexu- a l i t y , or a n t i - s o c i a l antagonism — i n s o c i e t y as i t e x i s t s , a t any r a t e . Le Paysan p e r v e r t i i s , i n f a c t , more than j u s t a c o l l e c t i o n of p a r a l l e l e x p e r i e n c e s of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s i n a b i l i t y t o dominate h i s n a t u r e so as t o a c q u i r e h a p p i n e s s . T h i s i s an e p i s t o l a r y n o v e l t h a t deserves the name, a c c o r d i n g t o the d e f i n i t i o n o f f e r e d by H e n r i C o u l e t : " . . . dans presque tous l e s romans par l e t t r e s q u i m e r i t e n t ce nom, l a v e r i t e n'est dans aucun personnage, e l l e e s t dans un l i e u ou convergent i e s d i v e r s fragments de v e r i t e et ou se compensent l e s d i v e r s e s 12 e r r e u r s . " The fragments of t r u t h p r e s e n t e d by each c h a r a c - t e r ' s e x p e r i e n c e of h i s c a p r i c i o u s n a t u r e converge i n the r e c i p r o c a l q u a l i t y of t h e s e e x p e r i e n c e s . The a c t i v i t y of each c h a r a c t e r ' s p a s s i o n a l i n s t i n c t s i s a response t o the p r o p e n s i t y of o t h e r c h a r a c t e r s t o obey impulses t h a t c r e a t e d i s o r d e r . We t h e r e f o r e c o n s i d e r the i n t e r d e p e n d e n c y of the h a p p i n e s s of the c h a r a c t e r s , r a t h e r than the f a i l u r e of any one c h a r a c t e r t o a t t a i n h a p p i n e s s , the " t r u t h " , or the t h e m a t i c c e n t e r , of the n o v e l . Happiness i n v o l v e s c o n t r o l of one's own n a t u r e , and t h i s i s o n l y p o s s i b l e i f the n a t u r e s of o t h e r i n d i v i d u a l s a r e under c o n t r o l as w e l l . M o r a l i t y , and h a p p i n e s s , i s thus a c o l l e c t i v e , r a t h e r than an i n d i v i d u a l concern. T h i s i s v e r y Le Roman jusqu'a. l a R e v o l u t i o n ( P a r i s , 1967), I , 480. much the conclusion Pierre draws from the l e t t e r s he has edited, as he indicates i n his proposal to create a virtuous microsociety that w i l l make the c o l l e c t i v e moral experience a positive one, i n opposition to the self-perpetuating chaos of society at large. CONCLUSION We are struck by a contrast i n texture, or i n structural q u a l i t y , between R e s t i f s non-autobiographical novels and the f i r s t of the novels inspired by his own experiences, Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , when we disengage ourselves from myopic examination of d e t a i l , stepping back from the novels, as we might from paintings, i n order to receive a general impression of form and color. There i s indeed, as Restif and other c r i t i c s have asserted, a marked difference between the f i c t i o n a l worlds a r i s i n g from the two sources of i n s p i r a t i o n . This difference lends i t s e l f rather w e l l , i n f a c t , to description i n p i c t o r i a l terms. The non-autobiographical worlds display a f l a t , two- dimensional q u a l i t y . The values of virtue and vice are opposed i n an external, unambiguous c o n f l i c t between black and white, where white dominates. Details of character por- tra y a l are thus s a c r i f i c e d to c l a r i t y of outline, and both the adventure and external sentimental plots contribute to this e f f e c t . The difference between the two plots i s that i n the adventure plots a clear d e f i n i t i o n of values i s maintained by fortuitous events, whereas i n the external sentimental plots the hero's family v i s i b l y structures his world i n order to eliminate ambiguities. In contrast, the world of Le Paysan perverti i s three- dimensional. The nuanced coloration of moral issues produced by the complex motives of the hero and the secondary characters, as communicated by the multiple point of view of the epistolary form, and the more concrete presentation of the modes of 162 existence of the characters, contribute to an impression of l i f e that i s lacking i n the non-autoM-'dg.'ra'phid.all novels. This has led Bachelin to comment that we seek i n vain a structural mechanism at the heart of the action of Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , but "En revanche, a toutes l e s pages nous y trouverons l a vie frissonante.""'" We take exception to the assertion that Edmond's world i s devoid of structure; but i t i s certainly evident that his search for i d e n t i t y i s more complex than that of the other heroes — witness the number of pages required to describe i t , whereas the moral-sentimental educations of the other heroes have lent themselves to r e l a t i v e l y succinct description. The difference i n length of discussion has nothing to do with the length of the novel. Many of the non-autobiographical novels are as long, i f not longer, than Le Paysan per v e r t i . The d i f - ference l i e s i n that fact that i n Ljs Paysan pe r v e r t i , a l l of the narrative i s devoted to the moral development of the hero and to the complementary development of the secondary characters; In the other novels, the narrative i s frequently interrupted by t i r o i r s giving past h i s t o r i e s of minor characters, which are irrelevant to the movement of the main p l o t s . These observations concerning contrasts i n esthetic effect between Le Paysan perverti and the non-autobiffigraphicali novels i n v i t e the conclusion that Restif was capable of creating con- vincing f i c t i o n a l worlds only out of situations i n which he had "'"Henri Bachelin, ed. L'Oeuvre de Restif de l a Bretonne (Paris, 1930), VI:, 467. been personally involved. Begue draws this conclusion when he states, "Ce sont, somme toute, ses l i v r e s autobiographiques \ 2 surtout, qui peuvent donner a, R e t i f l e t i t r e de romancier." Although we acknowledge the opposition i n structural quality between the two kinds of f i c t i o n a l world i n R e s t i f , we stop short of concluding that the contrast i n esthetic effect r e f l e c t s a r a d i c a l opposition i n basic v i s i o n . If the data of our study imposes recognition of contrasts, i t also imposes the conclusion that these contrasts are the effect of different techniques i n presenting a common problem. The apparent opposition between the non-autobiographical novels and the f i r s t of the autobiographical novels i s attenu- ated by the fact that each of Restif's characters, regardless of his o r i g i n s , provides a similar lesson i n morality. As Restif himself has said, his hero instructs either "par ses vertus, par ses succes," or "par ses chutes, par ses malheurs" (see above, pp. 2-3). In the f i r s t place, the non-autobiograph- i c a l heroes are happy, and the characters of Le Paysan perverti are unhappy, i n terms of thei r adherence to or their departure from, a well-defined ideal of morality that i s common to a l l of the novels. The happiness that Restif's virtuous characters enjoy, and of which his less virtuous characters are deprived, i s very much that described i n the following passage from the Encyclopedie 2 Armand Begue, Etat present des etudes sur Ret i f de l a Bretonne (Paris, 1948), p. 91. 164 a r t i c l e , Bonheur: "Notre bonheur l e plus parfait dans cette vie n'est done . . . qu'un etat tra n q u i l l e seme ga et l a de quelques p l a i s i r s qui en egaient l e fond." In Restif's novels, the l i n k between this kind of happiness and morality i s provided by the d e f i n i t i o n of virtue as the perpetuation of a cohesive family unit (with particular emphasis on the nucleus of the family, the couple) which i s , by i t s very nature, conducive to a uniform state of t r a n q u i l i t y enlivened by positive pleasures. The calm i s found i n the s t a b i l i t y and the p r e d i c t a b i l i t y of human relationships created by the adher- ence of individuals to c l e a r l y defined family roles; and this i s prevented from becoming an "indolence paraisseuse, ou notre a c t i v i t e n'ait r i e n a. sais i r , " ^ 1  (which i s the danger of too much t r a n q u i l i t y , according to the Bncyclopedie a r t i c l e \ by the a f f e c t i v e and sensual pleasures that family relationships provide. The conception of the family as the appropriate framework for happiness i s so thoroughly developed i n R e s t i f s novels that Robert Mauzi could very well hay;e added them to La Nouvelle Heloise as an i l l u s t r a t i o n of the ideal of "bonheur domestique" i n the eighteenth century novel, which he describes thus: Le fond du bonheur domestique, c'est 1'innocence. L'amour entre epoux est l e seul a. ne pas comporter d'amertume, car i l est l e seul que n'entache aucune faute, que ne cornpromet aucune violence . . . Le Diderot et a l . , Bncyclopedie, ou Dictionnaire raisonne des sciences, des arts et des metiers (Paris: Briasson, 1751- 657, I I , 322. 4 Loc. c i t . 165 bonheur f a m i l i a l . . . est l i e a une certaine structure. C'est un bonheur de groupe, un etat moyen entre l a s o c i a b i l i t e etendue au "monde", ou. l'on risque de se perdre, et l a solitude insupportable a, toute ame sensible . . . A l ' i n t e r i e u r du groupe, des relations de nature differente s'etablissent. l e bonheur domestique suppose une polyvalence du coeur, dont i l remplit et epuise les besoins, grace aux divers l i e n s — conjugal, paternel, f i l i a l , f r a t e r n e l — qui tissent l a trame de l'univers famili a l . 5 We add that i n Restif's novels, the "divers l i e n s " represent, not so much a pleasing variety of emotions, as a variety of objects for the same emotion. We have seen how a l l family affections are characterized by a general tenderness and respect, to the point that they adjust e a s i l y , i f need be, to a change i n relationship — as when D'Azinval of La F i l l e naturelle learns that the g i r l he i s planning to marry i s his daughter, for example. We have also had occasion to observe that this f a i l u r e to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between conjugal r e l a t i o n - ships and f i l i a l or fr a t e r n a l affections i s sometimes exagger- ated, and has rather peculiar e f f e c t s . The heroine of Adele, who wants to marry her brother, i s a case i n point. Our conception of the ideal of happiness i n Restif i s p r i n c i p a l l y derived from the non-autobi6.graph>Mall novels, and from the external sentimental plots i n p a r t i c u l a r , where the ide a l dominates the l i v e s of the characters. In these plot s , the narrative t y p i c a l l y focuses on characters who divide their time between developing their ideas on the subject of virtue and Robert Mauzi, L'Idee du bonheur dans l a l i t t e r a t u r e et l a pensee francaises au XvTII e  s i e c l e (Paris, I960), p~] 358. h a p p i n e s s , and l e a d i n g r e c a l c i t r a n t c h a r a c t e r s t o conform t o these i d e a s ; t o m a n i f e s t , i n p a r t i c u l a r , t e n d e r , r e s p e c t f u l , and moderately p a s s i o n a t e l o v e v i s - a - v i s a worthy o b j e c t i n view of f o r m i n g a s t a b l e and happy c o u p l e . The f a c t t h a t we e x t r a c t the f a m i l y e t h i c m a i n l y from the n o v e l s i n which i t i s p r a c t i c e d by the m a j o r i t y of the c h a r a c - t e r s does not mean, however, t h a t i t i s absent from the w o r l d of R e s t i f s unhappy p e r v e r t e d peasant. The s u b j e c t of Le Paysan p e r v e r t i i s , p r e c i s e l y , t h e unhappiness a t t e n d a n t upon d e p a r t u r e from v i r t u e ; and the v i r t u e from which Edmond q u i t e l i t e r a l l y d e p a r t s when he goes t o town to seek h i s f o r t u n e i s e s s e n t i a l l y the same f a m i l y e t h i c as t h a t developed i n the o t h e r n o v e l s . We do have, however, a d i f f e r e n t p e r s p e c t i v e on the e t h i c i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i than i n the o t h e r n o v e l s . The image of the b e t r a y e d e t h i c h e l d up t o Edmond .and the r e a d e r i n the l e t t e r s o f P i e r r e r e p r e s e n t s v i r t u e as a l i f e s t y l e i n more c o n c r e t e f a s h i o n than the o t h e r n o v e l s , no doubt because here R e s t i f a t t r i b u t e s i t t o a m i l i e u he knew. As we have seen i n P i e r r e ' s a p p r e c i a t i o n of the q u a l i t i e s of h i s f i a n c e e (see above p. 106), v i r t u e i s more p r a c t i c a l and l e s s s e n t i m e n t a l than i n the o t h e r n o v e l s . The peasants' d e v o t i o n t o f a m i l y r o l e s i s f u r t h e r m o r e accompanied by o t h e r , l e s s n o b l e m o t i v a t i o n s , such as p r i d e and a m b i t i o n . T h i s p a r a d i s i a c s t y l e of e x i s t e n c e serves., as a s u b j e c t f o r n o s t a l g i a or envy i n Edmond when he reads P i e r r e ' s l e t t e r s ; but i t a l s o has a more a c t i v e presence i n the n o v e l , i n Edmond' re p e a t e d a t t e m p t s t o r e a l i z e i n n o c e n t , s t a b l e l o v e r e l a t i o n s h i p 167 analogous to those of the country. He does eventually succeed i n the attempt, of course, and finds happiness i n his success, but so t a r d i l y that the unhappy consequences of departure from virtue nevertheless form the main development of the novel. In the non-autobiographical novels, then, the Restivian hero i s virtuous and happy, i n Le Paysan perverti he i s less virtuous and unhappy, and both virtue and happiness have much the same meaning i n both contexts. But i n making these obser- vations, we do not suggest that the unity of v i s i o n of the two worlds resides only i n their complementary presentations, the one negative and the other p o s i t i v e , of the same lesson, the necessity of morality to happiness. The characters' successes and f a i l u r e s i n attaining happiness i n virtue are not the only elements of instruction i n the novels; the reasons for them are of equal importance. The causes of Edmond's f a i l u r e s , and of the successes of his non-autob:i.<&g£a;phiCa!l counterparts, indicate whether or not i t i s the individual who determines the outcome of his search for happiness. Our study of plot structures, of the patterns of cause and effect i n the novels, has revealed that the hero's own nature i s the cause of his repeated f a i l u r e to at t a i n happiness i n Le Paysan perverti; but i t i s not the cause of either his eventual success, or of that of the heroes i n the other novels. We are therefore led to see another thematic l i n k between Restif's two f i c t i o n a l worlds. The statement of both worlds that happiness i s dependent upon virtue i s qua l i f i e d by the suggestion that happiness i s but a vain aspiration, 168 because virtue i s beyond the reach of common mortals. The plot structures suggest that s e n s i b i l i t y , the qualite maitresse of human nature i n the majority of R e s t i f s characters, makes an ambiguous contribution to r e a l i z a t i o n of the domestic i d e a l . S e n s i b i l i t y does dispose the individual to enjoy the sentimental pleasures offered by the stable, harmonious love relationships cha r a c t e r i s t i c of domesticity; but another aspect of s e n s i b i l i t y , a penchant for sensual pleasures, prevents put- ting the sentimental disposition into practice. The family ethic apparently does justice to sensual d i s - positions by including marital sex i n i t s fund of pleasures. But when we compare this prescription for happiness against the r e a l i t i e s of human nature as presented i n the novels, we note an error i n dosage of g r a t i f i c a t i o n s . The assumption that the sensual demands of s e n s i b i l i t y lend themselves to.a subor- dinate position v i s - a - v i s sentimental satisfactions i s unjus- t i f i e d , for i n the event of competition between sentimental and sensual sources of pleasure, the individual i n fact responds more readily to the l a t t e r . This does not mean, however, that indulgence of sensuality offers the sensitive individual an a n t i - s o c i a l source;, of happiness i n the place of domestic f e l i c i t y . Abandonment to one's passions does not f u l l y answer the Requirements of s e n s i b i l i t y any more than does the family ethic , because the individual retains his sentimental aspirations. We may therefore affirm that the Restivian hero i s to be counted among the eighteenth-century figures who inhabit the uncomfortable limbo 169 oil l'on n'est n i homme n i citoyen, ou. l'on n'appartient n i tout a f a i t a, l'Etat n i tout a. f a i t a. soi-meme, ou. l'on conserve des impulsions naturelles, alors que 1'innocence est perdue, ou l'on est l i g o t e par un systeme s o c i a l , sans avoir l a volonte de s'y fondre. In the novels we have studied, the "s o c i a l system" i s c o n s t i - tuted hy the family i n general, and stable conjugal r e l a t i o n - ships i n p a r t i c u l a r . The individual i s "bound" to this system not only by s o c i a l obligation, but by his own nature, his innate desire for order. He does, therefore, have a certain " w i l l " to become part of the system; but integration i s made impossible by the overriding b i o l o g i c a l impulses of his nature. This v i s i o n of man's divided l o y a l t i e s i s of course most e x p l i c i t i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , where the internal sentimental plot allows the hero's nature to determine his relationship to s o c i a l morality. The relationship established i s ambiguous i n precisely the sense described above. The sensual aspect of Edmond's nature separates him from virtue on the l e v e l of act, but not on the l e v e l of attitude, and this continual f r u s t r a t i o n of his aspirations to innocent pleasures by his passions i s the cause of his unhappiness. He does not extricate himself from this s i t u a t i o n . His enjoyment of a tardy moment of positive commitment to virtue comes only when his passions have l o s t , through over-use, the power to combat that commit- ment. And as we have seen, the plots of the other characters are variations on the theme of the unhappiness caused by the Mauzi, L'Idee du bonheur, p. 138. 170 individual's i n a b i l i t y to dominate his nature. The way these individual experiences are interwoven furthermore suggests that human weakness i s highly contagious. In Le Paysan perverti i t i s clear that the individual who does manage to a t t a i n v i r t u e , and happiness, does not owe his success to his a b i l i t y to dominate his sensuality; and the fact i s also clear i n the non-autobiographical novels. We do not make Le Paysan perverti uniquely responsible for the Restivian v i s i o n of man's probable vict i m i z a t i o n by his passions, any more than we attribute the conception of domestic f e l i c i t y exclusively to the non-autobiiggaphieall novels. The two f i c t i o n a l worlds meet i n their v i s i o n of the obstacles to r e a l i z a t i o n of the domestic i d e a l , just as they do i n their image of that i d e a l . In the external sentimental plots of the non-autobiograph- i c a l novels, the triumph of virtue i s not the outcome of the heroes' own effo r t s to control their passions; i t i s , rather, the end result of a rigorously guided moral-sentimental educa- tion that eliminates the necessity of choice. The heroes' passional motivations are aborted before they can actively compete with sentimentality for possession of their i d e n t i t i e s . The methods of conditioning r e c a l c i t r a n t characters include f r u s t r a t i n g their passions by removing their objects, as i n Le Marquis de T ; making i t appear that their passions destroy their sentimental attachments, as i n La Confidence necessaire, and reinforcing the sentimental reflex with selected reading, as i n L u c i l e . 171 The purpose of e d u c a t i n g the i n d i v i d u a l ' s n a t u r e t o the domestic i d e a l i s n o t , of c o u r s e , t o s t i f l e p a s s i o n a l m o t i v a - t i o n s e n t i r e l y , but r a t h e r t o make them ta k e a secondary p l a c e t o s e n t i m e n t a l m o t i v a t i o n s . We have noted t h a t the t a s k of c o n d i t i o n i n g women i s p a r t i c u l a r l y d e l i c a t e i n t h i s r e s p e c t . S i n c e they a r e e x c e p t i o n a l l y i m p r e s s i o n a b l e c r e a t u r e s , they a r e p r o t e c t e d from a n y t h i n g t h a t might awaken t h e i r p a s s i o n s even more th a n a r e men; but due t o t h i s same i m p r e s s i o n a b i l i t y , the moral e d u c a t i o n of women tends t o be too s u c c e s s f u l . S e n t i m e n t a l i t y t h r e a t e n s t o monopolize t h e i r n a t u r e s e n t i r e l y , so t h a t t h e i r s e n s u a l i t y appears a t r o p h i e d — or r a t h e r , i t i s r e d i r e c t e d toward f a m i l y members and female f r i e n d s . F o r t u n a t e l y , t h i s t u r n s out t o be a minor problem, however. A l i t t l e e x p e r i - m e n t a t i o n such as t h a t i n Adele i s s u f f i c i e n t t o r e v e a l t h a t normal s e x u a l i t y i n v i r t u o u s women i s but dormant, and i s r e a d i l y awakened by a husband — one who resembles f a t h e r or b r o t h e r i n v i r t u e . The p r i n c i p l e o b j e c t i v e remains, then, t o d i m i n i s h the power of s e n s u a l r e f l e x e s i n the male c h a r a c t e r s . C i r c u m s t a n c e s beyond the c o n t r o l of the heroes' e d u c a t o r s a i d i n the e f f o r t . The havoc wreaked by o t h e r p eople's p a s s i o n s i n the adventure p l o t s p r o v i d e s v i v i d , c o n c r e t e evidence t h a t p a s s i o n a l m o t i v a - t i o n s a r e not o n l y i n c o n d u c i v e t o h a p p i n e s s , they a re a n t i - h a p p i n e s s . The r e s o l u t i o n s of the adventure p l o t s c a s t y e t ano t h e r a s p e r s i o n on the s t r e n g t h of the c h a r a c t e r s ' moral f i b r e . The f o r t u i t o u s r e s c u e of the heroes — or more o f t e n of the h e r o i n e s — b e f o r e they a re contaminated by the a t t a c k 172 of passionate individuals suggests that they are as inadequate to the task of r e s i s t i n g other people's passions as they are to the task of r e s i s t i n g their own. The conditioning process i s successful, from the point of view of the characters. When they find their pursuit of happi- ness i n expression of their passions blocked at every turn, they f i n a l l y turn down the only passage that leads to s a t i s - f a c t i o n , the one with the virtuous g i r l waiting at the end. But from the point of view of the reader, the moral-sentimental education i s rather less convincing i n i t s painting of passions i n black and sentimentality i n white. The process of s a c r i f i c i n g nuances to c l a r i t y of outline i s so evident that we are led to suspect that the presentation of passions as c l e a r l y a n t i - happiness i s rather a r b i t r a r y . The suspicion i s awakened p a r t i c u l a r l y when the heroes' families intervene i n La Confidence necessaire and La F i l l e naturelle to f a l s i f y the evidence provided by the internal sentimental plots that independent expression of the passions can cause enjoyment and even happiness. In these novels, there i s no direct l i n k between the heroes' own passions and their unhappiness. The absence of this l i n k con- siderably weakens the overt statement of these novels that rejection of the passions i s as essential to the happiness of the individual as i t i s to society. We are i n fact led to wonder whether, i n the view of the author, a connection between passion and unhappiness r e a l l y e x i s t s , or whether when allowed to develop f r e e l y , Restif's characters would imply their creator as an apologiste of the passions, who only s a c r i f i c e s 1 7 3 those of his characters i n the non-autobi£grapM.c'a3.I novels i n order to cater to the l i t e r a r y and moral prejudices of his day. These implications of the non-autobiographical novels are r e c t i f i e d by Le Paysan p e r v e r t i . This novel provides the missing l i n k between the characters' passions and th e i r unhap- piness. At the same time, i t gives evidence that even direct experience of the destructiveness of the passions provides i n s u f f i c i e n t motivation to dominate them. Le Paysan perverti thus makes i t clear that i n the guided moral-sentimental edu- cation themes of his non-autobiographical novels, R e s t i f was not just giving l i p - s e r v i c e to the notion that ignorance of the delights of purely sensual motivations i s essential to personal happiness. The plots of Edmond and his friends imply a fundamental conviction i n Restif that happiness can indeed be assured the individual only when there i s no p o s s i b i l i t y of his finding occasions to s a t i s f y his sensuality outside the framework of conjugal relationships. We have found, then, a common denominator i n the f i c t i o n a l worlds a r i s i n g from the different sources of i n s p i r a t i o n i n R e s t i f , a common standard which permits us to add the two worlds together, and allows us to formulate a tentative d e f i n i - t i o n of Restif as implied author. The moral norms and the technical choices i n the novels we have studied add up to a coherent image of R e s t i f as moralist and a r t i s t . Our conclusions do not constitute, of course, a complete d e f i n i t i o n of Restif's v i s i o n of morality, for the novels that follow Le Paysan perverti have a contribution to make to this d e f i n i t i o n . We a r r i v e , rather, at a new, more educated hypothesis concerning 174 his a r t i s t i c tendencies that-can serve as a guide to further study of his treatment of the theme of morality and happiness. Both the non-autobiographical worlds and the world of Le. Paysan perverti imply the same R e s t i f , an individual i n whom a nostalgia for innocence coexists with a constant awareness that i t s preservation i s a luxury. The duality i s reflected i n the common denominator we have found, the simultaneous presence i n both worlds of the same idea l of happiness and of the same obstacles to i t s r e a l i z a t i o n . In i t s broadest terms, the i d e a l of happiness i s order and permanence, and i t s rarely surmountable obstacles are the propensities of the individual to pursue a c t i v i t i e s that create disorder, even chaos. We may say, i n f a c t , that the archetypal Restivian c o n f l i c t i s that described by Coulet as central to La Mouvelle Heloxse, "un . . . c o n f l i t entre notre aspiration a l a permanence et 7 notre fatale mobilite . . . " The two poles of this duality are not present, of course, i n the same proportions i n both kinds of f i c t i o n a l worlds we have studied; and this accounts for the contrasts i n texture we have observed. In the non- autobiographical worlds, forces for immobility control the forces for disorder, and this triumph of order i s reflected i n the t i d y , schematic nature of the novels' texture. In Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , the forces for disorder are the agents of the action, and this too i s reflec t e d i n the multi-dimensional ^Henri Coulet, Le Roman .jusqu'a l a Revolution (Paris, 1967), I, 403. 175 quality of a novel which i s vibrant with l i f e . Here we have a basis for defining a r t i s t i c tendencies i n R e s t i f that w i l l require testing against the evidence of the l a t e r novels. When he bases his world on his own experience, he i s the novelist of unhappiness, devoting his l i t e r a r y talents to depicting the various ways i n which the individual's "fatale mobilite," and that of others, prevent r e a l i z a t i o n of the aspiration to permanence; and when the source of i n s p i r a t i o n i s non-autobiographical, he indulges i n development of methods of correcting, or compensating f o r , the chaos of human existence. We are led to expect that only the hero of a dream world can enjoy the p r i v i l e g e of t o t a l commitment to order, and that, on the other hand, the heroes rooted i n r e a l i t y can never find a solution to their c o n f l i c t s . A glance over the l i s t of novels following Le Paysan perverti that make a contribution to the Restivian v i s i o n of the individual's adjustment to the mobilities of existence suggests that this expectation i s generally f u l f i l l e d , with one exception. Restif's f i c t i o n a l i z e d biography of his father, La Vie de mon pere (1778) stands as an exception to our rule that Restif condemns a l l of the heroes drawn from his own 'world to unhappiness. Restif i n fact presents the story as an excep- t i o n a l case. The hero i s an extraordinary man who i s equal to making the s a c r i f i c e s necessary to l i v i n g the ideal of order, without the accumulation of pressures that provoke similar s a c r i f i c e s i n the heroes of the non-autobiographical novels. 176 The hero does not experience precisely the same propensity for disorder as the majority of Restif's characters we have studied so f a r , however. As a character of already s o l i d v i r t u e , he asserts his independence, l i k e D'Azinval i n La F i l l e naturelle, by giving himself up to a virtuous passion for a worthy g i r l who nevertheless does not f i t i n with the plans of his parents. But unlike D'Azinval, the hero of La Vie de mon pere gives up the g i r l , returns to the farm at the behest of his father, and marries the unattractive but s o l i d g i r l who has been chosen for him. The investment i n conformity to the family ethic, the f i r s t mark of which i s f i l i a l obedience, i s complete, and i t i s r i c h i n returns for happiness. The pleasures of warm, stable human relationships are enjoyed at the l e v e l of family, of household (servants and farm workers), and the community at large. In some ways, however, the presentation of the moral ideal i n this novel does manifest the tendencies of Restif's auto- biographical art as set by Le Paysan .perverti. Although the psychology of the characters remains vague, their existence i s attached to r e a l i t y with concrete d e t a i l s of country l i f e ; and this existence i s presented, as i n Le Paysan p e r v e r t i , as an unattainable state. The theme of exile from paradise i s present i n the voice of the narrator, the perverted peasant, when he comments, for example, "Quant au caractere, infiniment i n f e r i e u r [a mon pere") pour l a bonte et cette force de vertu qui l e rendait s i venerable . . . je gemis, avorton informe, egalement indigne et du sang dont je sors, et des exemples que 177 3 ' a i eus . . . " A p a r t from L a V i e de mon pere, the r e m a i n i n g n o v e l s o f s o c i a l adjustment f o l l o w the p a t t e r n t h a t has emerged i n the n o v e l s we have s t u d i e d i n d e t a i l . Remedies a r e developed i n the n o n - a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s , and the i l l n e s s c o n t i n u e s t o be diagnosed i n those based on R e s t i f s e x p e r i e n c e . We f i n d the guided m o r a l - s e n t i m e n t a l e d u c a t i o n theme pro l o n g e d w i t h no e s s e n t i a l m o d i f i c a t i o n s i n L ' E c o l e des peres (1776) and i n Le Kfouvel A b e i l a r d (1778). The a s p e c t s o f e x i s t e n c e t h a t v i o l a t e the d e s i r e f o r o r d e r a r e e n l a r g e d upon, however, i n R e s t i f s c o n t i n u i n g e x p l o i t a t i o n of the a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l v e i n , which g i v e s r i s e to s i x n o v e l s b e s i d e s La V i e de mon pere and the v a r i o u s e d i t i o n s of the Pays an-pays ann e p e r v e r t i s s t o r y . I n t h e s e n o v e l s , t h e r e i s a tendency t o make the heroes' h a p p i n e s s depend more and more on the s t a b i l i t y o f o t h e r s . I n most c a s e s , t h i s means t h a t he i s condemned t o unhappiness. The R e s t i v i a n hero i s d e f i n i t e l y n o t g i f t e d w i t h independence, w i t h an a b i l i t y t o t a k e h i s d e s t i n y i n t o h i s own hands. The f a c t i s nowhere more e v i d e n t than i n La M a l e d i c t i o n p a t e r n e l l e (1779), where a f i r s t d e p a r t u r e from o r d e r , i n c o n t r a c t i n g a m a r r i a g e a g a i n s t the wishes of h i s f a t h e r , condemns the hero t o permanent f r u s t r a t i o n of h i s e f f o r t s to c o n s t r u c t s t a b l e l o v e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . The m a r r i a g e , which f a i l s , provokes a p a t e r n a l m a l e d i c t i o n , and t h i s s e r v e s as an,excuse 8 \ L a V i e de mon Pere ( P a r i s : G a r n i e r , 1970), p. 143. 178 f o r the hero t o accept b o t h h i s c a p r i c i o u s temperament, and the i n f i d e l i t y of the women he meets — and l o v e s — as f a c t s of l i f e . R e s t i f ' s n e x t two n o v e l s , La Femme i n f i d e l e (1786) and Ingenue Saxancour (1789), c o n t i n u e the tendency t o p r e s e n t the o p p o s i t i o n between s t a b i l i t y and m o b i l i t y as a c o n f l i c t between the main c h a r a c t e r and h i s s o c i a l c o n t e x t , r a t h e r than as a c o n f l i c t w i t h i n the hero h i m s e l f . I n La Femme I n f i d e l e , the f a i l u r e of the hero's w i f e t o f u l f i l l h i s e x p e c t a t i o n s of s t a b i l i t y i s e n t i r e l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r h i s unhappiness. I n Ingenue Saxancour, which i s based on the unhappy marriage of R e s t i f ' s daughter, the h e r o i n e ' s w o r l d not o n l y f a i l s t o f a v o r s t a b i l i t y , i t works a c t i v e l y t o i n v o l v e h e r i n a v i o l e n t s t y l e of l i f e . Ingenue i s the i n n o c e n t v i c t i m of a b r u t a l and p e r v e r t e d husband. T h i s unhappy s i t u a t i o n i s i n f a c t p r e s e n t e d as the i n d i r e c t r e s u l t o f the s o r t of u n s t a b l e f a m i l y s i t u a t i o n p r e - sented i n L a Femme i n f i d e l e . The l a c k of coherent guidance by her f a t h e r and mother confuses h e r , and causes h er t o make the wrong c h o i c e of husbands. B o t h p a r e n t s a r e a g a i n s t the m a r r i a g e , but s i n c e h e r mother has always a c t e d a g a i n s t the i n t e r e s t s of her daughter, Ingenue assumes t h a t her o p p o s i t i o n t o the m a r r i - age i s i n d i c a t i o n enough t h a t i t i s advantageous. Here a g a i n , a f i r s t d e p a r t u r e from o r d e r , i n f a i l i n g t o r e s p e c t her f a t h e r ' s judgement, makes her a permanent v i c t i m of chaos. The most s i g n i f i c a n t c o n t r i b u t i o n among the l a t e r n o v e l s to the R e s t i v i a n v i s i o n of happi n e s s and i t s unsurmountable o b s t a c l e s i s found, of c o u r s e , i n Monsieur N i c o l a s (1794-1797), R e s t i f s most l i t e r a l and det a i l e d , "but s t i l l fictionalized., autobiography. This work takes up again the theme that i s central to Le Paysan perverti: the individual's struggle to reconcile the c o n f l i c t i n g requirements of his own nature. The most interesting development of this theme i s provided i n the way the hero attempts to r e a l i z e f u l l y and simultaneously both aspects of his d u a l i t y . Monsieur N i c o l a s , f i r s t traces i n d e t a i l the emergence of the hero's d u a l i t y , which consists of a commitment to brotherly or fatherly adoration of the feminine sex, on the one hand, and to physical enjoyment of i t , on the other. And then the narra- tive develops the way he ultimately manages to s a t i s f y both i n c l i n a t i o n s , by persuading himself that the numerous l i a i s o n s i n which his sensuality involves him are consistent with the moral order, because they are dominated by paternal a f f e c t i o n . When the relationship i s ' actually incestuous, as i s often the case, so much the better, i n Nicolas' view. This somewhat special system works out' well u n t i l Nicolas' 9 l a s t great love, Sara one of his figur a t i v e daughters, f a i l s to manifest stable daughterly affections; her repeated i n f i - d e l i t i e s destroy the i l l u s i o n of permanence upon which his happiness depends, and with i t the hope of reconstructing the same sort of happiness elsewhere. How does L'Anti-Justine (1798), R e s t i f s pornographic novel, f i t i n with our hypothesis that i n R e s t i f s world view, 9 Sara i s also the heroine of a separate novel, published i n 1783, La Derniere aventure d'un homme de quarante-cinq ans. 180 ungovernable sexuality i s the major cause of the sensitive individual's condemnation to unhappiness? The obvious con- t r a d i c t i o n i s i n fact more apparent than r e a l . Restif's ostensible purpose i n publishing the novel was to s a t i s f y the reading public's taste for l i t e r a r y obscenity with a work that would not i n c i t e to sadism. As i t s t i t l e suggests, the book i s e x p l i c i t l y proposed as an antidote to the Justine of the Marquis de Sade. In the novel i t s e l f , R e s tif states, "Pour rempla,cer l a Justine et f a i r e preferer 1 1  Anti-Justine, i l faut que c e l l e - c i surpasse l'autre en volupte, autant qu'elle l u i cede en cruaute . . .  11  However, the book does not i n fact present the sexuality of the characters .as a voluptuous l i b e r a t i o n of the senses, but rather as exorcisation of a demon of eroticism. As Porter points out, "there i s much frenzy 11 here, but no joy." It i s evident that i n tracing Restif's career as novelist from La Famille vertueuse through L'Anti- Justine we encounter exploration of a rather wide variety of human experience, but viewed persistently i n a moral perspective, which eludes the narrowly pious and ostensible conventionality of most eighteenth-century didactic prefaces, including his own. In Monsieur Nicolas, Restif c l a r i f i e s for us his own con- ception of his role as moralist when he says, "Je ne veux point 1 0 P a r i s : Girouard, 1798, I, 101. 1 1 R j s _ t i f ' s Novels, p. 389- 181 etre moraliste proprement d i t , mais je veux que mon l i v r e et ma personne soient un instrument entre les mains des moralistes; qu'ils etudient en moi, et par moi, l a serie des actions 12 humaines." In our study of his early novels we have d i s - covered that R e s t i f i s not, indeed, a "moraliste proprement d i t , " i f hy such he means that his novels do not i n c i t e to v i r t u e . As we have seen, v i r t u e , as perpetuation of a stable order of human rela t i o n s h i p s , i s presented as beyond the reach of individuals who experience i n f u l l measure the r e a l i t i e s of human nature and society. And i t i s this function of virtue i n his novels, that permits us to interpret Restif's expressions of moral concern as much more than just the conventional excuse for placing sordid scenes of degradation before the eyes of his prurient readers. Restif's moral concern i s i n fact at the very heart of his f i c t i o n a l action, as an ideal of happiness against which the characters measure, and find wanting, the r e a l i t i e s of the human condition. Pa r i s , 1959, IV, 52. BIBLIOGRAPHY I. WORKS OP RESTIF Adele de Comm Lettres d'une f i l l e a son pere. 4 vols. Paris, 1772. L'Anti-Justine, ou les Delices de l'amour. Paris, 1798. Les Contemporaines, ed. J. Assezat. 3 vols. Paris, 1875. La Derniere Aventure d'un homme de quarante-cinq ans. Geneve, Paris, 1783. L'Ecole des peres. 3 vols. Paris, 1776. La Famille vertueuse. 4 vols. Paris, 1767. La Femme dans les t r o i s etats de f i l l e , d'epouse et de mere. 3 vols. Londres et Paris, 1773. La Femme i n f i d e l e . 4 vols. La Haie, Paris, 1786. La F i l l e naturelle. 2 vols. Paris, 1769. Le Fin Matois, ou Histoire du Grand Taquin. 3 vols. La Haie, 1776. Les Francaises. 4 vols. Neufchatel et Paris, 1786. Ingenue Saxancour, ou l a Femme separee. 3 vols. Paris, 1789. Lettres de Lord Austin de N*** a Lord Humfrey de Dorset, son ami. Cambridge et Londres, 1769. Lucil e, ou les progres de l a vertu. Francfort et Leipsig, 1769. La Malediction paternelle. 3 vols. Paris, 1779. Le Marquis de T s g g , ou 1 'Ecole de l a .jeunesse. 4 vols. Paris, 1771. Le Menage parisien, ou Deliee et Sotentout. La Haie, 1773. Monsieur Nicolas, 6 vols. Paris, 1959. Les Nouveaux Memoires d'un homme de qualite. Paris, 1774. Le Nouvel Abeiiard, ou Lettres de deux amants qui ne se sont .jamais vus. Paris, 1778. L'Oeuvre de Res t i f de l a Bretonne, ed. Henri Bachelin. 9 vols. Paris, 1930-32. Le Paysan et l a Paysanne pervertis, ou les Dangers de l a v i l l e . 4 vols. La Haie, 1784-87. 183 l a Paysarme p e r v e r t i e , au l e s Dangers de l a v i l l e . 4 v o l s . P a r i s , 1780-83. Le Pays am p e r v e r t i , ou l e s Dangers de l a V i l l e . 4 v o l s . P a r i s , 1775. Le P i e d de F a n c h e t t e , ou 1 ' Q r p h e l i n e f r a n c a i s e . 2 v o l s . F r a n c f o r t e t L e i p s i g , 1769. Les Posthumes. 4 v o l s . P a r i s , 1802. L a V i e de mon pere. ed. G. Rouger. P a r i s , 1970. I I . OTHER WORKS Begue, Armand. E t a t present des etudes s u r R e t i f de l a Bretonne. P a r i s , 1948. Booth, Wayne. The R h e t o r i c of F i c t i o n . Chicago and London, 1961. B r u n e t i e r e , F e r d i n a n d . "Le Roman e x p e r i m e n t a l , " Revue des Deux Mondes (15 f e v r i e r , 1880), 937. C h a r p e n t i e r , P . - J . - L o u i s . R e s t i f de l a Bretonne, sa p e r v e r s i o n f e t i c h i s t e . These Medecine. Bordeaux, 1912. C h i l d s , J . R i v e s . R e s t i f de l a Bretonne. Temoignages et • Jugements. B i b l i o g r a p h i e . P a r i s , 1949. C o u l e t , H e n r i . Le Roman - .jusqu'a l a R e v o l u t i o n . 2 v o l s . P a r i s , 1967. D i d e r o t et a l . E n c y c l o p e d i e , ou D i c t i o n n a i r e r a i s o n n e ctes s c i e n c e s , des a r t s et des m e t i e r s . 17 v o l s . P a r i s , 1751-65. E t i e n n e , S e r v a i s . Le Genre romanesque en France depuis 1' a p p a r i t i o n de l a " N o u v e l l e Helo'ise" jusqu' aux approches de l a R e v o l u t i o n . B r u x e l l e s , 1922. Goodman, P a u l . The S t r u c t u r e of L i t e r a t u r e . Chicago and London, 1962. Grimm et a l . Correspondance l i t t e r a i r e , p h i l o s o p h i q u e et c r i t i q u e . P a r i s , 1879. G r i m s l e y , R o n a l d . "L'Ambiguite dams l ' o e u v r e romanesque de D i d e r o t , " A s s o c i a t i o n I n t e r n a t i o n a l e des etudes f r a n c a i s e s , C a h i e r s . X I I I (1961), 223-38. Hazard, P a u l . La pensee europeenne au X V I I I e s i e c l e . P a r i s , 1963. 184 J o l y , Raymond. Deux etudes s u r l a p r e h i s t o i r e du r e a l i s m e . Quebec, 1969. L i c h t e n b e r g e r , Andre. Le S o c i a l i s m e au X V I I I e s i e c l e . P a r i s , 1895. M a r t i n , Angus. " R e s t i f de l a Bretonne devant l a c r i t i q u e : 1950-1963," S t u d i F r a n c e s ! . IX (1965), 278-283. M a u z i , R o b e r t . L'Idee du bonheur dans l a l i t t e r a t u r e et l a pensee f r a n c a i s e s au X V I I i e s i e c l e . P a r i s , I960. M o n s e l e t , C h a r l e s . R e t i f de l a Bretonne, sa v i e et ses amours. P a r i s , 1854. Nurse, P e t e r . The A r t of C r i t i c i s m . E d i n b u r g h , 1969. P o r t e r , C h a r l e s . " L i f e i n R e s t i f c o u n t r y , " Y a l e F r e n c h S t u d i e s , XL (1968), 103-117. . R e s t i f ' s N o v e l s , or An A u t o b i o g r a p h y i n Search of an A u t h o r . New Haven and London, 1967. P o s t e r , Mark. The U t o p i a n Thought of R e s t i f de l a Bretonne. New York, 1971. Rousseau, Jean-Jacques. La N o u v e l l e Heloi'se, ed. D a n i e l Mornet. 4 v o l s . P a r i s , 1925. Rousset, Jean. Forme et S i g n i f i c a t i o n . P a r i s , 1962. S c h o r e r , Mark. "Technique as D i s c o v e r y . " I n : Approaches t o the N o v e l , ed. Robert S c h o l e s . San F r a n c i s c o , 1966. Simon, P i e r r e - H e n r i . " R e s t i f de l a Bretonne: un m o r a l i s t e ambigu," J o u r n a l de Geneve, Supplement l i t t e r a i r e (30-31 J a n v i e r , 1965), 1. T r a h a r d , P i e r r e . Les M a i t r e s de l a s e n s i b i l i t e f r a n c a i s e au X V I I i e s i e c l e . 4 v o l s . P a r i s , 1933.

Cite

Citation Scheme:

    

Usage Statistics

Country Views Downloads
Japan 5 0
United Kingdom 3 0
China 2 1
Turkey 1 0
United States 1 2
City Views Downloads
Tokyo 5 0
Unknown 3 6
Beijing 2 0
Bogazici 1 0
Ashburn 1 0

{[{ mDataHeader[type] }]} {[{ month[type] }]} {[{ tData[type] }]}

Share

Share to:

Comment

Related Items