I’ll Drown My Book: Conceptual Writing by Women (2012)

27 December 2018, dusan

“The first collection of conceptual writing by women.

Conceptual writing is emerging as a vital 21st century literary movement and I’ll Drown My Book represents the contributions of women in this defining moment. The book takes its name from a poem by Bernadette Mayer, appropriating Shakespeare. It includes work by 64 women from 10 countries, with contributors’ responses to the question—What is conceptual writing?—appearing alongside their work. I’ll Drown My Book offers feminist perspectives within this literary phenomenon.”

Contributors: Kathy Acker, Oana Avasilichioaei & Erin Moure, Dodie Bellamy, Lee Ann Brown, Angela Carr, Monica de la Torre, Danielle Dutton, Renee Gladman, Jen Hofer, Bernadette Mayer, Sharon Mesmer, Laura Mullen, Harryette Mullen, Deborah Richards, Juliana Spahr, Cecilia Vicuna, Wendy Walker, Jen Bervin, Inger Christiansen, Marcella Durand, Katie Degentesh, Nada Gordon, Jennifer Karmin, Mette Moestrup, Yedda Morrison, Anne Portugal, Joan Retallack, Cia Rinne, Giovanni Singleton, Anne Tardos, Hannah Weiner, Christine Wertheim, Norma Cole, Debra Di Blasi, Stacy Doris & Lisa Robertson, Sarah Dowling, Bhanu Kapil, Rachel Levitsky, Laura Moriarty, Redell Olsen, Chus Pato, Julie Patton, Kristin Prevallet, a.rawlings, Ryoko Seikiguchi, Susan M. Schultz, Rosmarie Waldrop, Renee Angle, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Tina Darragh, Judith Goldman, Susan Howe, Maryrose Larkin, Tracie Morris, Sawako Nakayasu, M. NourbeSe Philip, Jena Osman, kathryn l. pringle, Frances Richard, Kim Rosenfeld, and Rachel Zolf.

Edited by Caroline Bergvall, Laynie Browne, Teresa Carmody and Vanessa Place
Publisher Les Figues Press, Los Angeles, 2012
ISBN 9781934254332, 1934254339
455 pages
via CEP

Reviews: Rob McLennan (2012), TF (Diagram, n.d.), Janice Lee (HTML Giant, 2012), Lindsay Turner (Boston Review, 2012), H. V. Cramond (New Pages, 2013), Mia You (Zoland Poetry, 2013), Jill Magi (Drunken Boat, n.d.), Cecilia Corrigan (Jacket2, 2014), Nathan Austin (Sink, n.d.), Sarah S. Kortemeier (Progressive Librarian, 2016).

Publisher
WorldCat

PDF (44 MB)

Bhanu Kapil: Ban en Banlieue (2015)

25 December 2018, dusan

“Bhanu Kapil’s Ban en Banlieue follows a brown (black) girl as she walks home from school in the first moments of a riot. An April night in London, in 1979, is the axis of this startling work of overlapping arcs and varying approaches. By the end of the night, Ban moves into an incarnate and untethered presence, becoming all matter— soot, meat, diesel oil and force—as she loops the city with the energy of global weather. Derived from performances in India, England and throughout the U.S., Ban en Banlieue is written at the limit of somatic and civic aims.”

Publisher Nightboat Books, New York, 2015
ISBN 9781937658243, 1937658244
112 pages
via Ulises

Reviews: Davy Knittle (The Boston Review, 2015), Sueyeun Juliette Lee (The Constant Critic, 2015), Allison Conner (Jacket2, 2016), Steven Maye (Chicago Review, 2016).

Publisher
WorldCat

PDF

Melpomene: Bagabone, Hem ‘I Die Now (1980)

26 October 2018, dusan

Bagabone, Hem ‘I Die Now (1980) is perhaps the first novel that was purportedly written by a computer.

The back flap of the dust jacket states this about the book’s origins: “Can a computer write a novel? To find out, some experts in literature, linguistics, and computers at the Institute of Science and Technology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, programed a computer, Melpomene, with English verb patterns and semantic (i.e., meaning) units drawn from twentieth-century women writers, as well as D.H. Lawrence, James Joyce, and some ‘angry young men’ of the 1960s. Then they added some patterns and units from Pidgin English and French, and the astounding result is Bagabone, Hem ‘I Die Now. Melpomene, which is the name of the Greek muse of tragedy, picked the title; translated from Pidgin English, it means, ‘Bagabone (a character in the novel) is dying.'”

Following its publication, Computer World published an article (“Publisher Claims Computer Composed Novel”, 25 Aug. 1980, p. 23) effectively defeating the publisher’s claim about the work’s computational origins. In the article, AI experts deem the novel to be human-written, and another source reports that there is no ‘Institute of Science and Technology’ at Jagiellonian University. Moreover, due to its mode of operation, the publisher (Vantage Press) would apparently have been paid to print the book. The copyright holder for Bagabone was a human—an Englishman named G.E. Hughes—who could not be reached by Computer World. (Intriguingly, this copy of the book is inscribed by one ‘Eric Hughes’, though this could be coincidental.)”

Publisher Vantage Press, New York, 1980
ISBN 0533042496, 9780533042494
136 pages
via James Ryan (xfoml)

Commentary: Peter Swirski (2013), James Ryan (2017).

WorldCat

PDF (40 MB)
Internet Archive