|Alberto Moravia by David Levine|
The complete review's Review
Time of Desecration is, as a prefatory note explains, a novel presented entirely in dialogue:
This novel consists of an interview given by the character indicated by the name Desideria to the author, indicated by the pronoun "I", during the seven years of the drafting of the book.
Finally, I shall no longer exist except in your writing, as an imprint, as a somebody.
It said to me: 'You do what I tell you to do and don't ask for explanations.
Psychologically, it seems entirely plausible, especially as Desideria describes its anti-authoritarian urging. One can easily imagine a teen in Desideria's situation and position embracing (i.e. imagining) it:
I: The Voice was anti-bourgeois ?Desideria: Yes, passionately so.
I obeyed the Voice which, after all, amongst so much confusion and obscurity, was the only clear, stable, and coherent thing in my life.
You're not a girl like other girls. Only, things have to be done, not merely said. You keep saying that you hate the bourgeoisie, you make out that you would be capable of goodness knows what, but in the end, what have you done ?
I at last understood that, for me at least, the true pleasure of making love consisted in perceiving the effect of castration in the person of my lover. Yes, I was satisfied at having castrated him, even if only provisionally; and this was all the pleasure I derived from making love.
Sex is comic, or rather, one wants it to be comic because one does not know how to speak seriously about it.