The Decadent Cookbook (1997)
The Decadent Gardener (1998)
The Decadent Traveler (2000)
As readers of the Journal are well aware, Decadence as a style, movement and literary genre hails from (and all but ends with the passing of) the fin de siecle of the 19th century.
Primarily concentrated in the late 1880s and throughout the 1890s, its authors and notable works began to peter off into inconsequentiality and human wreckage, with several passing on at a fairly young age (Lorrain, de Nerval, Rimbaud, Baudelaire, even Aubrey Beardsley), and others settling into the mediocrity of a more tempered bourgeoise existence (Rachilde), inanity and absurdism (Mirbeau) and the (apparent) opposition and bane of Decadence, religion (Huysmans, Wilde).
Despite its surprising relevance to the modern era and the striking applicability of its analyses and assessments of life, love, and the course of history to the modern day, this would seem to mark it as much of a time and place as its related cousins of a bygone era, Dandyism, Symbolism and Romanticism.
But not so! Somewhere in the realms of hallucinatory imagination, only semi-real in the sense of the love interests of a typical Gautier protagonist, there exist two men, perhaps not quite in the flower of their putative youth, but elegant and refined aficionados of the aesthetic, well versed in literature and the darker corners of history.
Two dandies, as effete as they are cultured, with a razor sharp wit marked by its dry British overtones, yet well acquainted with the true Decadence of the French school.
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you my two favorite literary personae of the modern age: Medlar Lucan (whispered to be a mask for author Alex Martin) and Durian Gray (rumored alias of author Jerome Fletcher).