Passage: Week 3

“It was as if he were just playing, splashing and swishing like a child busy cooking up so ghastly brew of water, grass, and mud, which he then asserts to be soup. Yes, like a child, thought Baldini; all at once he looks like a child, despite his ungainly hand, despite his scarred, pockmarked faces and his bulbous old-man’s nose. I took him to be older than he is; but now he seems much younger to me; he looks as if he were three or four; looks just like one of those unapproachable, incomprehensible, willful little prehuman creatures, who in their ostensible innocence think only of themselves, who want to subordinate the whole world to their despotic will, and would do it, too, if one let them pursue their megalomaniacal ways and did not apply the strictest pedagogical principles to guide them to a disciplined, self-controlled, fully human existence.”

I though that this passage was very interesting because I believe that Baldini is the first person to actually see Grenuoille for what he truly is, a child. Yes, Grenuoille has committed murder, and done horrific things, but he is still only a young boy. And Baldini sees this rather than seeing a devilish, horrifying monster that most people see. What do you think about Baldini’s observance of Grenuoille??

-Riley

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2 thoughts on “Passage: Week 3

  1. Baldini does watch Grenouille intensely while he makes the perfume for the first time, but after this observation he is just interested in the perfume and making money off of it. I think Baldini is jealous of how natural Grenouille is when making the perfume especially because he makes it so perfectly without a recipe. He may also be jealous because Baldini has worked his whole life for this and Grenouille comes in as a child and passes him up.

  2. I think that Baldini is the first person to really look at Grenouille as a child, even from the beginning he has been more of a “thing” than a boy. And, even when the monk briefly thought of him as a child it was quickly yanked away. I also saw this passage a different way, like a sort of justification for Grenouille. It sort of shows Grenouille’s innocence, even in his horrific crimes. At the end when Baldini remarks on the development of children and the necessity of structure, something that Grenouille never experienced. I know that Grenouille is a sort of emotionless being, but I feel bad for him. I wish that Baldini weren’t so greedy and egotistical so that he could provide a father figure for Grenouille.

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