lthe right weight loss programthe primary novel by author and researcher Estelle Benazet Heugenhauser, is a textual content in a biting type that produces with darkish pleasure a political reflection on the physique, what we put in it, what comes out, on the bodily forces and insurance policies that transfer it. set and freeze.
The right weight loss program presents itself as Madame Perez’s internal monologue. Ready indefinitely for her kids, as a flood has damaged out and can progress all through the guide, she begins to reminisce about scenes from the previous and shortly falls into an obsessive reflection on meals and violence in opposition to girls. . Whereas it little by little presents all facets of the delirium, the monologue tries to squeeze out one thing which may… probably the most actual, a Actual that may solely be grasped in delirium, for a mad Actual: that of the relation to the physique, of what is available in and what comes out, but additionally the Actual of inequalities, of violence, of the forces of destruction that traverse this physique. On this context, whereas meals is normally linked to pleasure and the life impulses that inhabit us, Estelle Benazet Heugenhauser’s writing works a sea change the place demise and destructiveness show to be important facets of our relationship with meals, what we eat, put together and retailer.
What Madame Perez calls ” the right weight loss program constitutes a revolutionary program in opposition to the meals coverage hitherto dominant, which relies on an inequality that feeds the “boys” greater than the “ladies”: ” For millennia it is at all times been the identical, boys develop with our flesh and bones, boys construct the world with our flesh and bones The unequal distribution of meals causes the our bodies of the “boys” to be tall, sturdy and muscular, whereas the our bodies of the “ladies”, starved of meals, are produced as weak, flabby and skinny.
Madame Perez then depends on a restatement of the theses defended by sure feminist theorists, corresponding to Priscille Touraille in France, who take into account that the variations in peak and weight in women and men are the results of social relations of domination that promote inequalities. in the best way of consuming. Rephrased within the phrases of Madame Perez: Ladies have the bib, they don’t have anything to eat, that is why girls are smaller on common than males, that is why girls weigh lower than males on common, c is what scientists name normality †
This so-called organic normality is a building of the patriarchy’s dietary coverage, the latter being ” father’s court docket by Madame Perez. However for this one it isn’t the mom’s court docket when he’s within the service of one of many fathers, who will be capable to convey concerning the obligatory revolution. It will probably solely occur in a frank opposition and a turnaround, the creation of the ” good weight loss program † Subsequently, we should impose this soup-based meals coverage to vary the evolution of the boy’s physique. We are going to take a look at them, we are going to see the primary indicators of their weakening, much less muscle, extra water, much less biceps, much less pecs, extra flaccidity, extra cellulite. The boys’ blood will flip to soup, the soup will irrigate the boys’ brains. The blood of males will not exist, the brains of males will not exist. The boys will probably be decreased to mush †
For Ms. Perez, solely a revolutionary coverage that instantly contradicts the norms produced by the patriarchy may convey concerning the obligatory reversal. Nonetheless, the intention of this revolutionary meals coverage is just not reparation, as a result of: no restore doable† The injury that human girls and girls undergo is simply too nice, irreparable. † To ask for compensation, you must ask them for the our bodies, the mountains of our bodies no court docket can receive compensation for such a debt.
Bodily Forces, Social Forces, Cosmic Forces
In The right weight loss programit’s not simply the query of meals at stake, however an entire physics starting from the meticulous self-discipline of the feminine our bodies to the unleashing of cosmic forces.
the ” weight loss program refers back to the disciplinary regime that allows or not sure positions, sure methods of standing or habits. The self-discipline of the our bodies – for instance the failure to remain on all fours for Madame Perez – stems from the chance of violence: “ on all fours an object can enter “. It’s the specter of violence that justifies the boundaries to behavior. That is additionally the case for the gender-based distribution of the probabilities to inhabit the area. The worker of the city corridor comes to forestall » (or quite threaten) Madame Perez that it’s harmful for her daughter, Salomé, to play on the sector behind the home: « a foul encounter occurred shortly, a van stops by the facet of the street and it is over So once more, the specter of violence in opposition to the our bodies of girls serves as the premise for the incarceration of those our bodies. The right weight loss programis that, by the specter of violence, girls are concurrently stored indoors, disadvantaged of meals and restricted of their actions. That be capable to a physique beneath these situations?
Past the strengths of the person physique, The right weight loss program mobilizes the telluric or cosmic forces which, of their improvement, appear to indicate progress (” unavoidable says Cindy Coutant’s afterword) of the disaster: As such, water is just not solely that of the soup that can weaken the boys’ our bodies, additionally it is that which surrounds the our bodies and endangers them. All through the story, the rain continues to fall, whereas the water continues to rise from the bottom. All the pieces is soaked. The strangest factor maybe is that this catastrophe presents itself as a basic environment, it’s nothing extraordinary, however quite a type of each day catastrophe that doesn’t fear Ms Perez an excessive amount of, such because the one which will probably be solved by present and future local weather adjustments.
Time itself seems as a type of cosmic forces to which the resistance of the human physique at all times appears precarious: the theme of meals preservation by freezing seems as a central theme. What does freezing imply? Utilizing bodily forces to keep up steadfastness and stillness whereas avoiding decomposition and evolution could be a type of metaphor for our age of local weather inactivity.
writing demise want
Estelle Benazet Heugenhauser’s writing appears completely calibrated to seize the upcoming destruction, as she manages to convey even on the tongue a number of the decomposition and violence that may be attributed to the demise intuition. It’s a writing of a paradoxical damaging vitalitywho discovers the mortal within the dwelling as she discovers the reality in delirium.
Psychoanalysis teaches us that repetition performs an vital function as an expression of the demise intuition, and as an insistence on the traumatic Actual. On this language of delirium that tries to outline an ineffable Actual as precisely as doable, the rhythm is remarkably constructed by the quite a few repetitions: ” the boy howls and his howls harmonize with the sound of his mom’s farts, the boy howls like his mom’s farts, the adolescent boy howls like his mom’s farts and the grown boy continues to whine like his mom’s farts, that is all they do, whine all their life, their life is an infinite fart […] †
These diatribes, within the violence of expression and content material, are harking back to the SCUM manifest by Valerie Solanas. Like Solanas, it entails a reversal of misogynistic discourses and practices right into a type of radical misconduct. Whereas Solanas invited to ” destroy the male intercourse “, Ms. Perez proposes because the objective of the brand new meals coverage that boys are” cooked †
The repetitions are additionally generally the results of a writing that goals to be goal, near Monique Wittig’s experiments in opoponax† Apart from the political diatribes, Madame Perez’s monologue can be a sequence of descriptions of actions or states whose goal is tough to know. We witness (regardless of ourselves) a type of state of affairs or exact choreography that appears to play the function of a protection ritual to beat back horror and hazard: “ I rise up and decide up the roll of plastic, I drag it to the second a part of the room, I roll the plastic the opposite method, I cowl the opposite a part of the lounge. The scissors slip, they minimize themselves †
The ultimate inversion, inflicting the horror on the finish of a sentence, completes the revolution by means of which ” the system of presidency comes to indicate the potential for destruction, of oneself and of others, particularly in reference to meals. Including the theme of demonic motherhood, we will say that: The right weight loss program embodies what Judith Butler remembers concerning the demise drive in The Energy of Nonviolence † There’s in love or hooked up to like a damaging pressure that drives human creatures to destruction and self-destruction, together with the destruction of what they love probably the most †
Estelle Benazet Heugenhauser, The right weight loss programafterword by Cindy Coutant, Rotolux Press editions, 2022, €13
The right weight loss program was written throughout a residency in Limbes, Saint-Etienne, for the exhibition-translation made with Cindy Coutant, “Jupiter House”l4bouche interprets Zoë Sofia »
A studying presentation will happen within the bookstore on June 24 at 7 p.m A guide, a cup of tea (36 Rue René Boulanger, 75010), hosted by Lauren Malka.