BOHEMIAN LITERARY LIFE AND CLANDESTINE EMOTIONS: WAYS OF BEING BETWEEN THE FICTIONAL AND THE AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL
A bohemian individual will indulge in a state of “in-betweenness”, of liminality (social, professional), but he will also torment and exhaust himself inside this state or “imposture”. His dual, fictional-biographical identity reveals his theoretically limitless propensity towards playfulness, hence, towards the histrionic condition – which is neither entirely fictional, nor entirely “real” – of the participants, be they writers, artists, critics, censors, “complicitous” informers, or duplicitous or reliable drinking pals. Actually, bohemian life makes visible a private life of fiction, or that of the fictionalized self, so to speak. A more adequate term in this context would be, perhaps, that of co-fiction, or the co-fictionalizing process, through a fiction-like life or through self-inflicted fiction, marking the way in which fictional characters and situations, on the one hand, and writers, artists, readers (the “inhabitants” of the literary and artistic world), on the other hand, lend to one another their modes of existence, their manners of being. When they avoided being turned into easily manipulable tools of ideological propaganda, Romanian writers who were deemed to be subversive or “Aesopian” in the seventh or eighth decade of the twentieth century were not, however, promoters of any ethical radicalism or of overt opposition to the dictatorial political regime. They preferred to cultivate a bohemian ethos, as a form of artistic survival for individuals with an ambiguous social and intellectual identity, who probed for means of survival by compliance with the often comfortable perks of their own professional guild. Whether they resorted to aesthetic escapism and “resistance” or to compromises and negotiations with the censorship, bohemian writers enacted the state of being characters of their own lives, in the sense that they shared a state of exception, a poeticized existence, a collective self-delusion.
Keywords: private life of fiction, fiction-like life, bohemian ethos, poeticized existence, collective self-delusion.