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Miserable Miracle

Author: Henri Michaux
Publisher: NYRB Classics
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He also began to take mescaline at regular intervals, recording his deeply disorienting, often traumatic experiences in a series of unflinching texts beginning with Miserable Miracle. Celebrated in France and around the world for his accomplishments as a writer and artist, Michaux remained averse to publicity and public honors throughout his life, and in 1965 refused the French Grand Prix National des Lettres. For many years the only photograph of himself that he allowed to circulate showed his right hand holding a pen over a sheet of paper on a chaotic writing desk." --BOOK JACKET.


Deleuze and Art

Author: Anne Sauvagnargues
Publisher: A&C Black
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In Deleuze and Art Anne Sauvagnargues, one of the world's most renowned Deleuze scholars, offers a unique insight into the constitutive role played by art in the formation of Deleuze's thought. By reproducing Deleuze's social and intellectual references, Sauvagnargues is able to construct a precise map of the totality of Deleuze's work, pinpointing where key Deleuzian concepts first emerge and eventually disappear. This innovative methodology, which Sauvagnargues calls "periodization", provides a systematic historiography of Deleuze's philosophy that remains faithful to his affirmation of the principle of exteriority. By analyzing the external relations between Deleuze's self-proclaimed three philosophical periods, Sauvagnargues gives the reader an inside look into the conceptual and artistic landscape that surrounded Deleuze and the creation of his philosophy. With extreme clarity and precision, Sauvagnargues provides an important glimpse into Deleuze's philosophy by reconstructing the social and intellectual contexts that contributed to the trajectory of his thought. This book is the product of insightful and careful research, which has not been made available to English readers of Deleuze before now.


Darkness Moves

Author: Henri Michaux
Publisher: Univ of California Press
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An anthology of the works of the French poet and artist contains substantial selections from his major volumes and includes several of his unique paintings, hallucinated visions, fables, fantastic journeys, meditations, and essays.


The Beat Hotel

Author: Barry Miles
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
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The Beat Hotel has been closed for nearly forty years. But for a brief period—from just after the publication of Howl in 1957 until the building was sold in 1963—it was home to Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, Gregory Corso, Brion Gysin, Peter Orlovsky, Harold Norse, and a host of other luminaries of the Beat Generation. Now, Barry Miles—acclaimed author of many books on the Beats and a personal acquaintance of many of them—vividly excavates this remarkable period and restores it to a historical picture that has, until now, been skewed in favor of the two coasts of America. A cheap rooming house on the bohemian Left Bank, the hotel was inhabited mostly by writers and artists, and its communal atmosphere spurred the Beats to incredible heights of creativity. Its inhabitants followed the Howl obscenity trial, and they corresponded with Jack Kerouac as On the Road was taking off. There Ginsberg wrote “Kaddish,” “To Aunt Rose,” “At Apollinaire’s Grave,” and “The Lion for Real,” and Corso developed the mature voice of The Happy Birthday of Death. The Beat Hotel is where the Cut-up method was invented, and where Burroughs finished and published Naked Lunch and the Cut-up novels. From a party where Ginsberg and Corso drunkenly accosted Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray, to an awestruck audience with Louis-Ferdinand Céline a year before he died; from a drug-addled party on a houseboat on the Seine with Errol Flynn and John Huston, to Burroughs’s near arrest as a heroin dealer: mischief, inspiration, and madness followed the Beats wherever they went. Based on firsthand accounts from diaries, letters, and many original interviews, The Beat Hotel is an intimate look at a crucial period for some of the twentieth century’s most enduring and daring writers.


Christo Fiction

Author: François Laruelle
Publisher: Columbia University Press
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François Laruelle's lifelong project of "nonphilosophy," or "nonstandard philosophy," thinks past the theoretical limits of Western philosophy to realize new relations between religion, science, politics, and art. In Christo-Fiction Laruelle targets the rigid, self-sustaining arguments of metaphysics, rooted in Judaic and Greek thought, and the radical potential of Christ, whose "crossing" disrupts their circular discourse. Laruelle's Christ is not the authoritative figure conjured by academic theology, the Apostles, or the Catholic Church. He is the embodiment of generic man, founder of a science of humans, and the herald of a gnostic messianism that calls forth an immanent faith. Explicitly inserting quantum science into religion, Laruelle recasts the temporality of the cross, the entombment, and the resurrection, arguing that it is God who is sacrificed on the cross so equals in faith may be born. Positioning itself against orthodox religion and naive atheism alike, Christo-Fiction is a daring, heretical experiment that ties religion to the human experience and the lived world.


Nightmare Alley

Author: William Lindsay Gresham
Publisher: New York Review of Books
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Nightmare Alley begins with an extraordinary description of a freak-show geek—alcoholic and abject and the object of the voyeuristic crowd’s gleeful disgust and derision—going about his work at a county fair. Young Stan Carlisle is working as a carny, and he wonders how a man could fall so low. There’s no way in hell, he vows, that anything like that will ever happen to him. And since Stan is clever and ambitious and not without a useful streak of ruthlessness, soon enough he’s going places. Onstage he plays the mentalist with a cute bimbo (before long his harried wife), then he graduates to full-blown spiritualist, catering to the needs of the rich and gullible in their well-upholstered homes. It looks like the world is Stan’s for the taking. At least for now.


Everything Flows

Author: Vasily Grossman
Publisher: New York Review of Books
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A New York Review Books Original Everything Flows is Vasily Grossman’s final testament, written after the Soviet authorities suppressed his masterpiece, Life and Fate. The main story is simple: released after thirty years in the Soviet camps, Ivan Grigoryevich must struggle to find a place for himself in an unfamiliar world. But in a novel that seeks to take in the whole tragedy of Soviet history, Ivan’s story is only one among many. Thus we also hear about Ivan’s cousin, Nikolay, a scientist who never let his conscience interfere with his career, and Pinegin, the informer who got Ivan sent to the camps. Then a brilliant short play interrupts the narrative: a series of informers steps forward, each making excuses for the inexcusable things that he did—inexcusable and yet, the informers plead, in Stalinist Russia understandable, almost unavoidable. And at the core of the book, we find the story of Anna Sergeyevna, Ivan’s lover, who tells about her eager involvement as an activist in the Terror famine of 1932–33, which led to the deaths of three to five million Ukrainian peasants. Here Everything Flows attains an unbearable lucidity comparable to the last cantos of Dante’s Inferno.


Occupy Time

Author: J. Adams
Publisher: Springer
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While secondary texts on Paul Virilio typically see no way out of the tempo- and techno-dystopia he articulates, Occupy Time engages the events of Occupy Wall Street to fix attention on what such readings circumvent: Virilio's elusive theory of resistance.


Darwin s Pharmacy

Author: Richard M. Doyle
Publisher: University of Washington Press
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Are humans unwitting partners in evolution with psychedelic plants? Darwin�s Pharmacy shows they are by weaving the evolutionary theory of sexual selection and the study of rhetoric together with the science and literature of psychedelic drugs. Long suppressed as components of the human tool kit, psychedelic plants can be usefully modeled as �eloquence adjuncts� that intensify a crucial component of sexual selection in humans: discourse. Psychedelic plants seduce us to interact with them, building an ongoing interdependence: rhetoric as evolutionary mechanism. In doing so, they engage our awareness of the noosphere, or thinking stratum of the earth. The realization that the human organism is part of an interconnected ecosystem is an apprehension of immanence that could ultimately benefit the planet and its inhabitants. To explore the rhetoric of the psychedelic experience and its significance to evolution, Doyle takes his readers on an epic journey through the writings of William Burroughs and Kary Mullis, the work of ethnobotanists and anthropologists, and anonymous trip reports. The results offer surprising insights into evolutionary theory, the war on drugs, the internet, and the nature of human consciousness itself. Watch the book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xof-t2cAob4


The Alteration

Author: Kingsley Amis
Publisher: New York Review of Books
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In Kingsley Amis’s virtuoso foray into virtual history it is 1976 but the modern world is a medieval relic, frozen in intellectual and spiritual time ever since Martin Luther was promoted to pope back in the sixteenth century. Stephen the Third, the king of England, has just died, and Mass (Mozart’s second requiem) is about to be sung to lay him to rest. In the choir is our hero, Hubert Anvil, an extremely ordinary ten-year-old boy with a faultless voice. In the audience is a select group of experts whose job is to determine whether that faultless voice should be preserved by performing a certain operation. Art, after all, is worth any sacrifice. How Hubert realizes what lies in store for him and how he deals with the whirlpool of piety, menace, terror, and passion that he soon finds himself in are the subject of a classic piece of counterfactual fiction equal to Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle. The Alteration won the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best science-fiction novel in 1976.