Critics have commented on the lack of a sense of intersubjectivity in the works of Julien Green: "L'absence d'autrui pese lourdement sur l'univers greenien," writes Annette Tamuly, who adds "autrui n'est pas simplement ecarte de la scene romanesque pour faire place nette devant un solipsisme ... envahissant" (Tamuly 246). In Chaque Homme dans sa nuit, Wilfred's apparent solipsism may in fact arise from certain narcissistic tendencies, from an inclination of the character toward a privileging of the self. Incapable of holding to the lost narcissism of his childhood, Wilfred redirects this energy to a succession of father figures. displacing the impulse to idealize the self onto a host of other people who he hopes resemble him. Yet perhaps the self-reflectiveness that distinguishes Green's characters is just a feature of an early stage in the development of their faith. Thus the spiritual itinerary that Wilfred seems to follow describes a gradual evolution away from a primary narcissism, in which the object of the character is the experience of being loved, to an awakening to God whereby love is freely given.
"In the Eyes of the Father: Narcissism and Identification in Julien Green’s Chaque homme dans sa nuit,"
University of Dayton Review: Vol. 20:
1, Article 11.
Available at: https://ecommons.udayton.edu/udr/vol20/iss1/11