"'Of her apparel she retains/Only her sonorous jewellery'"

This is a quote from a poem by Baudelaire, called 'Les Bijoux' ('The Jewels').  It draws attention to the way the Marquis has fetishistic attraction to the paraphernalia linked to his murderous desires.  We are told earlier in the story that the red necklace belonged to an aristocratic survivor of the Terror, and in an example of ‘guillotine humour’ wore it around her neck to demonstrate her avoidance of execution.  Fetishism is often argued to be linked to the trauma of the mother withdrawing from the early closeness with her child in his early years.  Freudians would no doubt agree that the Marquis’ singular treatment of women demonstrates ‘issues’ with Mama...

Read 'Les Bijoux' in French and English.