By Pierre. Michel Foucault (ed) Riviere
To loose his father and himself from his mother's tyranny, Pierre Rivi?re made up our minds to kill her. On June 3,1835, he went within his small Normandy condominium with a pruning hook and minimize to loss of life his mom, his eighteen-year-old sister, and his seven-year-old brother. Then, in penal complex, he wrote a memoir to justify the entire grotesque tale.Michel Foucault, writer of insanity and Civilization and self-discipline and Punish, accumulated the correct files of the case, together with scientific and criminal testimony, police files. and Rivi?re's memoir. The Rivi?re case, he issues out, happened at a time while many professions have been contending for prestige and gear. clinical authority used to be demanding legislations, branches of presidency have been vying. Foucault's reconstruction of the case is a superb exploration of the roots of our modern perspectives of insanity, justice, and crime.
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Extra info for I, Pierre Riviere, having slaughtered my mother, my sister, and my brother: A Case of Parricide in the 19th Century
A rope had to be tied to the top of a tree we wanted to fell; I said to the accused jokingly, it is you Pierre who arc going fa tie the rope; I hardly supposed he could do that, the more so as rain was falling, and the workman who had elimbed other trees to tic the rope would himself have refused to climb that one at that time. Riviere, however, did not need further urging and nimbly climbed to the tOP of the beech, which was thirty foot high and almost without branchcs; he climbed a good way beyond the point where the rope had to be fixed and climbed down the tree very fast, letting himself fall ten or twelve feet.
I told the accused that he would kill his horse. " And indeed he urged up his horse and managed to get the cart up, the horse was foundered, I really thought it was injured; my husband and Riviere the father ran up and promptly unharnessed the horse, which was in great danger ; the father scolded the son, who made no reply. About twO years ago, one day when I sat down beside the accused to talk to his grandmother, who had just spoken to me, Riviere drew back abruptly as if very much alarmed. " "Eh," he replied, "the devil!
Pierre Fortin, fifty, car penter: I knew Riviere when he was a child, he seemed very eager to learn to read and write. When he was ten to twelve years old he did not seem the same any more, he appeared ,6 RIVIERE . . become an idiot, he displayed very great obstinacy, did not answer when called; he went to church alone and came back alone, he always looked as if he were ashamed, and almost never talked to anyone, he constantly held his head down and looked askance, he sometimes swore at his horse for no good reason; I sometimes felt that his father was distressed at his character, he used to say that he would never be able to make anything of him.
I, Pierre Riviere, having slaughtered my mother, my sister, and my brother: A Case of Parricide in the 19th Century by Pierre. Michel Foucault (ed) Riviere