Isée Bernateau : Frozen Time

Fantasio and Leonce, the eponymous adolescent heroes of works by de Musset and Büchner, grapple with a static temporality, synonymous with boredom, brooding, and emptiness. This temporality opens onto death, seen as the only reality once they leave the Edenic timelessness of a childhood whose symptom is the fantasy of the dead child. This frustrating relationship with time seems to be a sign of the trauma represented in adolescence by the encounter with the genital object. Death seems to be put forward as protection against the sexual, and the suspension of time seems to be the dramatic strategy developed to “delay” the dreaded amorous encounter.