Jean-Paul Sartre: Les Mains sales [Crime Passionnel]

(3236 words)

A young woman, Olga, is listening nervously to the radio as it announces the retreat of the German military, the advance of the Soviet army, and the defection of Illyrian troops to the Russian side. There is sudden and insistent knocking at her door; she arms herself with a revolver before admitting Hugo, a still younger man (in his early twenties), who, it is immediately clear, is at least as anxious as his host. Stuttering dialogue ensues: Hugo has just been released from prison; he and Olga are members of the same political party, and possibly former lovers; he is evidently in fear of his life, and with good reason. Moments later, there is another knock at the door: enter two armed thugs, looking for Hugo...

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O'Donohoe, Benedict Paul. "Les Mains sales". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 23 September 2009
[, accessed 27 January 2015.]