Sunday, April 20, 2014

Theme: Oulipo

  • Darcie Dennigan is a player. I don’t mean only that she’s a member of team poetry. I mean that she’s one of the sharps, one to keep your eye on at all times, the one to whom you pass the ball when team poetry needs to score. Her fancy is as consistent as her footwork.Read more
  • Since this is a paper about the computational context of literary writing, and to some extent poetry, I have invested heavily in metaphor, at least as far as the title is concerned. Taking key terms in no particular order: by end I mean not so much terminus as singularity or convergence of opposites, that defining, indefinable point where turn becomes return as one state gives way to another; from the imperative lift.Read more
  • In Oulipo’s running debate over whether to make the constraints it employs explicit, Perec usually came down on the side of letting the cat out of the bag - but La Boutique (remains) Obscure. Perec’s dreams are the same kind of crazy as most people's. He discovers hitherto unnoticed doors in his apartment, appears naked in public, has (or fails to have) sex with famous people.Read more
  • One of the things the Oulipo claims sets them apart from other avant-garde groups is that their movement isn’t meant to be political. And yet strong Oulipians, like Raymond Queneau, Harry Mathews, and Georges Perec, have wanted to interrogate the world we live in, largely through a disruptive use of language and a more conscious approach to the everyday world. Read more
  • Bond, James is a character study conveyed through an index, a book length listicle-with-commentary of one of literature and film’s most distinctive characters. Author Michele Disler starts with an alphabetical list of situations that Bond has been in throughout the Fleming novels (Approximate Number of Times, Bait, Close Shaves), moves onto the character’s anatomy, and then concludes with an autobiography inspired by Dr. No.Read more
  • As I write this in San Francisco, Jacques Jouet is at the Place Stalingrad in Paris, writing a serial novel in thirty-two parts. He has agreed to sit for eight hours a day inside a windowed tent at the southwestern tip of the Bassin de la Villette, typing away in 18-point Times while the text on his computer screen is projected onto a display nearby for anyone who cares to monitor his progress. Read more
  • For over fifty years now, the (mostly) French phenomenon known as the Oulipo (short for Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle, or ‘Workshop for Potential Literature’) has been baffling and enthralling readers everywhere with its array of opaque literary techniques. Founded in 1960 as a subcommittee of the even more enigmatic Collège de ‘Pataphysique, the group has included such luminaries as Italo Calvino, Georges Perec and Raymond Queneau.Read more
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