INTRODUCTION TO SECTION III

This section deals with the pantophile Malraux. His interests were manifold: artistic, literary, historical, archaeological, political, and military. In each area Malraux attempted to discover for himself and for society more than a raison d'être and more than an ethos that would keep body and soul together; he searched for an ontology through which each individual could fulfill his potential if he so willed--a kind of Aristotelian entelechy. Attuned to worldly existence, Malraux did not seek escape in religion, romanticism, or in esoteric cults. Indulging in a bit of mythomania, in 1934, on an archaeological investigation he claimed erroneously to have discovered the ruins of the Queen of Sheba's capital city. When his wife and two sons died tragically, he knew the most excoriating sorrow. Malraux did not become alienated, however, as did many of Hermann Hesse's antiheroes.

Malraux's many talents and interests, chaotic impulses, and inner antagonisms and ambivalences were experienced as a complexio oppositorum. The disparate parts of his being welded together in a cohesive whole; harmonies and cacophonies created patterns in his life and added to the dimension of his personality. Neither reason nor instinct were overvalued or underplayed, nor did either work against the other for long periods of time. Malraux's volatility was also instrumental in his productivity and creativity. Like Voltaire, Malraux was a man of action who went out into the world and confronted those with whom he felt strong differences. He delineated his beliefs in the novels Man's Fate and Hope. In the empirical domain his overt action made him join forces with the Loyalists during the Spanish Civil War. Like Balzac, Malraux was endowed with enormous energy and a powerful imagination, accounting for his numerous works that included Antimemoirs and volumes on art. For Malraux, life was a continuously exciting drama. To live fully meant to discover and rediscover worlds in their perpetual

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