September 06, 2013

Houellebecq on Love

Q: What makes you love a woman?

Michel Houellebecq: A form of honesty. What I really can't stand, for example, is coyness, teasing, putting on an act. Love is the most stimulating connection between two people because it's both intellectual and physical. Sometimes it can go flat simply because of the way a person's skin feels. In The Banquet, Plato writes about two people who rush into each other's arms as though they knew each other already. It's a magnificent passage. It means something if you believe in reincarnation: they had already met in a previous life. If you don't, this instant impression of familiarity is a complete mystery. A mystery, but it exists. The relationship immediately feels right, natural, it just flows.