Masochistic desire and colour Symbolism in the novel Venus im Pelz by Leopold Sacher-Masoch
The present contribution deals with the problematic colour symbolism in the controversial novel Venus im Pelz written by Leopold Sacher-Masoch. With regard to the thesis stated by Hans J. Wulff, that colours do not possess their own semantic meaning but are an integral element of one superordinate entirety and therefore have to be analysed in each respective context, the attempt is made to show the coherency between the semantic of colours and the masochistic ritual as constructed by Sacher-Masoch. The intensifying depiction of colours emphasizes the nature of masochistic fantasies in the analysed text in splendid respect. However, it is accentuated that the author deals rather conventionally with colour symbolism in his literary project. An answer might be found in the character of masochism itself as it integrates violence in a system of ritualized acts where innovative procedure is not given preference.