Philosophy Today 65 (4):773-788 (2021)

Ruud Welten
Erasmus University Rotterdam
In this contribution, a poetical transformation of victimhood is explored as described by Jean-Paul Sartre in his Saint Genet, a study of the writer Jean Genet. First, the question is answered what Sartre, who famously wrote “There are no innocent victims,” has to say about victimhood. Second, an outline is given of the context of Jean Genet’s work and the role he plays in Sartre’s thinking. There is a clear line from Sartre’s earlier study of Baudelaire to Saint Genet. Both authors try not to reject the judgement that has been passed on them but to affirm it, to turn this affirmation into an art. Third, already in his Baudelaire, but even more in Saint Genet, Sartre describes the merge of the victim and executioner as a mystical enterprise. Moreover, like Baudelaire, Genet transforms the idea of the convict and evil into a language dedicated to flowers. This leads to a transformation from victimhood to poetry.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  Continental Philosophy
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.5840/philtoday2021726419
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,587
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Master, Slave and Merciless Struggle.Kate Kirkpatrick - 2019 - Sartre Studies International 25 (1):22-34.
Women and Minorities Vs. Sartre: Win, Win … Win!Natascha H. Lancaster - 2000 - Sartre Studies International 6 (2):12-25.
Women and Minorities Vs. Sartre: Win, Win … Win!Natascha Lancaster - 2000 - Sartre Studies International 6:12-25.
Saint Genet: Actor and Martyr.C. D. - 1964 - Review of Metaphysics 18 (1):184-184.
Saint Genet: Actor and Martyr. [REVIEW]D. C. - 1964 - Review of Metaphysics 18 (1):184-184.


Added to PP index

Total views
5 ( #1,182,567 of 2,461,946 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
5 ( #143,932 of 2,461,946 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes