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Manuscript text by André Breton, dated 27 April 1931.

Breton write this text, dated 27 April 1931, shortly before Salvador Dalí’s exhibition at Pierre Colle’s gallery that would be the public presentation of the latter’s painting Profanation of the Host. The anti-religious activity in question can be viewed from a triple perspective. It follows on from research into sexuality, and sits squarely within the struggle against taboos and bourgeois morality that began with Dada and was continued by surrealism. It also pertains to the militant aspects of the group, and to the common cause maintained with the Communist Party (in April 1931 L'Humanité published a series of articles on ‘the opium of the people’). However, and most importantly, it locates very clearly the limits of this common cause: the enemy is not that massive capitalism but, if not clericalism, then at least religious thought in all its forms, from conditioned reflexes to militant broadsheets.
For more information on this text and its context, please refer to the commentary for Les Vases communicantsŒuvres completes, volume II, p. 1351. [Atelier André Breton website, 2005]

Manuscript, 27 April 1931.
- 7 in-12 handwritten manuscript pages by André Breton, in black ink on blue paper, of this text dated 27 April 1931, with numerous deletions and corrections.
In this manuscript, Breton deals with anti-religious activity, with solitude and non-solitude with the woman with whom he lives, and with the community of availability that the surrealists should find once more:
‘Here by way of a reminder is what seems to me to constitute a portion of the appalling state of things in which we are caught and against which in 1931, to my immense regret, I can find nothing serious with which to oppose it …  

Each one of us can accuse themselves of weakness almost to the same degree: Péret for having been in Brazil for two years, Tzara for not reacting with such violence as he used to... Tanguy for no longer painting because his paintings we so love are in poor demand and because laziness suits us all down to a tee.’ Unpublished text. [Auction catalogue, 2003 ; Translated by Krzysztof Fijalkowski]



André Breton, (Édition de Marguerite Bonnet avec la collaboration de Philippe Bernier, Étienne-Alain Hubert et José Pierre), Les Vases communicants, Notice, Œuvres complètes, tome II, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade, Paris, Gallimard, 1992, pages 1351-1352.

Creation date27-avr.-31
Bibliographical material

7 in-12 pages

Date of publication 1931
Physical descriptionMs - encre noire sur papier bleu

Bibliothèque littéraire Jacques Doucet, Paris : BRT 59

Keywords, ,
CategoriesAndre Breton's Manuscripts
Set[AB's Manuscripts] Miscellaneous Manuscripts
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