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‚Echapper à lʼépilepsie du temps‘

Sylvain Tessons Roman ‚La Panthère‘ des neiges als alternativer Lebensentwurf und intermediales ästhetisches Modell im Kontext des Artensterbens und ökologischer Krisen

Annette Simonis

Pages 275 - 296

Sylvain Tesson’s novel ‚La Panthère des neiges‘ has been rightfully appraised for its remarkable poetic language and its sublime aesthetic style by contemporary critics. The narrative about his journey into the Tibetian mountains in search of the snow leopard serves Tesson as a starting point for developing an alternative form of life which is diametrically opposed to the common routines of urban life in Western civilizations. When confronted with the highly endangered species of the snow leopard Tesson focuses on the value of the human-animal relationship, which, in his narrative, becomes the epitome of a human life in harmony with the natural ecosystems. Appreciating the solitude of the Tibetian landscape, the protagonist rediscovers patience and attentive observation as cultural practices that enable him to overcome the restlessness and lack of balance typical of his previous lifestyle. As Tesson’s text gradually reveals, the wild animal and the human protagonist are involved in a process of mutual observation, which provides a poignant model of their interrelatedness. The article examines how the author positions his reflections on the model of a good life in the context of an intermedial aesthetics. The photographer Vincent Munier is not only introduced as an admired companion and fellow traveller, his photographs are moreover considered as a special form of art and their depictions are subtly integrated into the novel as an ideal aesthetic expression complementary to Tesson’s own literary texts.


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