Lol Stein

Essay by murray26University, Bachelor'sA, December 2013

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Clarence Murray Jr




Lol Stein Critique

The Ravishing of Lol Stein is a novel written by Marguerite Duras in 1964. It follows the life of Lol Stein, a woman born in South Tahla who is left by her fiancé at the age of nineteen. This event is the catalyst for her shock and withdrawal from the world around her; though her childhood friend Tatiana would argue that her odd nature began much earlier. The narration of the novel switches between Jack, Tatiana's lover (who becomes obsessed with Lol), and Lol. Duras writes the part of Lol with an air of detachment, and yet captures her obsession and her interactions with Jack in a very sensual way. The result is a highly complicated novel that rejects a plot in favor of particulars that engross the majority of the work.

In the second paragraph assigned, Lol alerts Jack to the fact that she saw Tatiana in his room, naked.

Hearing this clearly has incredible significance for Jack. The idea of voyeurism is constant throughout this novel, and it seems as if Lol is implying that she was spying on Jack and Tatiana in their hotel room. It's interesting to note that Duras writes that Tatiana was "that way in the locked room, for her lover". (Duras, 106) She could just as easily said that Tatiana was waiting for Jack. This could potentially lend itself to Jack becoming disinterested with Tatiana; he no longer finds himself in the position of being her lover. Their relationship has become too easy; the adventure of sneaking about is gone. It's almost as if Tatiana being with her husband is more secretive. When reading the following sentence, it comes off as incredibly erotic. The "intensity of the sentence increases, and "the sentence explodes". (Duras,