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robertogreco : robertobolaño   27

Relingos | The Brooklyn Quarterly
"Spaces survive the passage of time in the same way a person survives his death: in the close alliance between the memory and the imagination that others forge around it. They exist as long as we keep thinking of them, imagining in them; as long as we remember them, remember ourselves there, and, above all, as long as we remember what we imagined in them. A relingo—an emptiness, an absence—is a sort of depository for possibilities, a place that can be seized by the imagination and inhabited by our ­phantom-follies. Cities need those vacant lots, those silent gaps where the mind can wander freely."



"We Buy Old Books

Cities have often been compared to language: you can read a city, it’s said, as you read a book. But the metaphor can be inverted.

[painting of plan of Mexico City]

The journeys we make during the reading of a book trace out, in some way, the private spaces we inhabit. There are texts that will always be our dead-end streets; fragments that will be bridges; words that will be like the scaffolding that protects fragile constructions. T. S. Eliot: a plant growing in the debris of a ruined building; Salvador Novo: a tree-lined street transformed into an expressway; Tomás Segovia: a boulevard, a breath of air; Roberto Bolaño: a rooftop terrace; Isabel Allende: a (magically real) shopping mall; Gilles Deleuze: a summit; and Jacques Derrida: a pothole. Robert Walser: a chink in the wall, for looking through to the other side; Charles Baudelaire: a waiting room; Hannah Arendt: a tower, an Archimedean point; Martin Heidegger: a cul-de-sac; Walter ­Benjamin: a one-way street walked down against the flow.

And everything we haven’t read: relingos, absences in the heart of the city.

Guaranteed Repairs

Restoration: plastering over the cracks left on any surface by the erosion of time.
Sidewalks

Writing: an inverse process of restoration. A restorer fills the holes in a surface on which a more or less finished image already exists; a writer starts from the fissures and the holes. In this sense, an architect and a writer are alike. Writing: filling in relingos.

No, writing isn’t filling gaps—nor is it constructing a house, a building, just to fill up an empty space.

Perhaps Alejandro Zambra’s bonsai image might come closer: “A writer is a person who rubs out. . . . Cutting, lopping: finding a form that was already there.”

But words are not plants and, in any case, gardens are for the poets with orderly, landscaped hearts. Prose is for those with a builder’s spirit.

Writing: drilling walls, breaking windows, blowing up buildings. Deep excavations to find—to find what? To find nothing.

A writer is a person who distributes silences and empty spaces.

Writing: making relingos."
architecture  cities  design  spaces  space  commonplace  geography  relingos  mexicodf  df  mexico  valerialuisellu  writing  silence  via:alexismadrigal  alejandrozambra  restoration  robertobolaño  tomássegovia  gillesdeleuze  jacquesderrida  baudelaire  heidegger  hannaharendt  robertwalser  tseliot  slavadornono  walterbenjamin  emptiness  absence  possibility  possibilities  imagination  urban  urbanism  deleuze  mexicocity 
july 2014 by robertogreco
Toward a Poetics of Skateboarding | The American Reader
"But for all of its private jargon, skateboarding’s poetry has never been linguistic. It is forever embodied and also, though this is difficult to speak of seriously, spiritual. How else to explain its appearance in Uganda without even a single retail outlet to support it? In fact, the only conveyable language of skateboarding, outside of participation and socialization in the activity itself, has always been spoken through film.

In broad terms, skate media splits time between documentation and advertisement, and their commercial evolution has skewed ever more crass and spectacular. Recent work from select video artists, however, attempts to confront the activity’s basic mystery and meaningful meaninglessness. Non-skateboarders have tended not to look very closely at these films. They mostly do not care. Skateboarders meanwhile care far too much to care exactly why. In any case, it’s here that an attempt toward a poetics of skateboarding must begin."



"Nor can we call such an effort unselfish. My own struggle with the mystery of skateboarding began five years ago, fifteen after I first stepped onto a board, when I began work on my second novel. The problem I encountered was that none of skateboarding’s confectionary can or should be dismissed. Speaking technically and contra Ian Mackaye, skateboarding today is a sport and a hobby both, along with countless other things: a therapy, an obsession, a conservative anti-drug. In its basic meaninglessness, skateboarding has become the tool that takes the shape of whoever’s hand it’s in."



"What in those first years had fit awkwardly into a de facto rubric of athletics—a sport to be timed and judged for athletic merit—became in the 1970s something more rhetorical. The ethos was the punk scavenging of revolution by way of repurposing. Whatever prefigurations of the object we had seen, never before had they been deployed creatively. To speak in China Mieville’s terms, what emerged was something counterposed to the comfort of the uncanny. The activity, new, unrecognized, and bounded only by imagination, was abcanny."



"While the basic spirit of skateboarding might have remained constant since the addition of polyurethane, the marketplace around it quite obviously has not. Now and once again the importance of skateboarding in our time is on the increase. Today, it is on Fox. It is on ESPN with real-time algorithms for evaluating tricks. Once more the marketplace would have us comprehend skateboarding as a sport.

We know on first glance that skateboarding, in its dominant form of street activity, stands apart from ball and net athletics. It seems uninterested, too, in velocity and stopwatch performances. But the first challenge to the rubric of sport begins even lower, at a semiotic level. You and I could, if we wanted, go and shoot lazy jumpshots on a netless schoolyard hoop, or go to the driving range and smack buckets of balls into the green void. We can take our gloves to the park and throw grounders and pop flies and apply tags to invisible runners. But for any of these to qualify as “basketball,” “golf,” or “baseball,” we would require the structure of competition and order of rules.

Systems such as these have no bearing on skateboarding, of which even the most negligible acts, no matter how brief or private, simply are skateboarding. Consider: between my home and the nearest skatepark is a well-paved boulevard with sewer caps embedded into the blacktop every half block or so. A source of joy for me is to push down this boulevard and pop tiny ollies over these sewer caps, sometimes barely scraping my tail, other times popping hard and pulling my knees up to my chest. These are not tricks proper, just ways to see and engage with the street’s reality. This is not, as athletes might call it, practice; I am not training for a future event. It is travel, yes, but the joy has little to do with the scenery or distance covered. In the purview of skate competition, this pushing down the boulevard, the single most fun I have in any given day, is not a scorable act of skateboarding. It is worth zero and it is worth everything.

In a world increasingly data-driven and surveilled, skateboarding lives beneath scoring and resists all datazation by establishing everything as a performance. It deflects the surveillance state by its primal devotion to documenting and sharing itself, monitoring every possible development, repetition, and failure. It pre-empts the onslaught of observation by embracing it. To pre-empt is to deflect, but also to admit defeat. Luckily, skateboarders are shameless—in this way, they’re the perfect actors to play the role of themselves.

Our potential heuristic now approaches what literary and cultural theorists today speak of, with a smirk, as the so-called authentic self. But a skater, whether standing on his stage, behind a camera, or at a keyboard, sees and thinks and performs precisely as what and who he is. What other memberships function in this or a similar manner? Parenthood. Romantic partnership. Citizenship. Does artistry?

***

To date, the most complete attempt to theorize skateboarding has been Iain Borden’s Skateboarding, Space and the City: Architecture and the Body (Berg, 2001). Borden, a Professor of Architecture and Urban Culture at The Bartlett, University College London, treats the activity of skateboarding as a Lefebvrian practice with a potential to become its own sort of architecture: not of construction, but by the “production of space, time, and social being.” He traces the history of skateboarding into the 1990s’ street skating movement, and speaks of the way this “oppositional subculture” rethinks architecture “as a set of discrete features and elements…recomposing it through new speeds, spaces and times.” The gears of capitalism create spaces in which behavior is prescribed and easily accounted for. Skateboarding’s opposition is thus a compositional process, partially of the individual body, which is recomposed against the “intense scopic determinations of modernist space,” and partially of a deeper critique of urban life: “production not as the production of things but of play, desires and actions.”"



"By contrast, today’s most compelling skateboarding films aim to capture not only the play of skateboarding, but enact what Borden calls the “positive dialectic that restlessly searches for new possibilities of representing, imagining and living our lives.” The “Panoramic Series” from Philip Evans, for example, relieves the actor from the full burden of attention. Here Evans follows Phil Zwijsen through his hometown of Antwerp:"



"The skater, Austyn Gillette, appears only after the environmental context, resulting in a portrait not of one or the other, but both. The subject is, as skateboarding’s always has been in practice, the interactions between city and individual body. Alongside recent work by Mike Manzoori, Evan Schiefelbine and select others, these films find energy beyond the progressive trickery of athletics, or the documentation of extant geographies. They combine the skateboarder’s practice—creative, productive—with a distinctly non-skateboarding meta-awareness of the activity’s potential for meaning. Their grounding within the geist of skateboarding is obvious: there is nothing a skater spots more quickly than the fraud, or tourist. These are films made by skateboarders who have lived within the activity’s world, and who choose to leverage the activity as a tool to understand itself. How long, they ask, must a toy endure before it becomes something else? What does it become, and does this mean it has ceased to be a toy?"



"Roberto Bolaño called surrealism “something convulsive and vague, that familiar amorphous thing.” If indeed there is ever to be a poetics of skateboarding, familiarity will have to play a role. Suvin argued that science fiction’s value lay in its ability to effect cognitive estrangement. Campbell’s film documents and creates ostranenie by the re-presentation of a familiar world as captured by, and portrayed through, the glance of the radical dreamer. In fact, what Cuatros does better than any film I’ve seen is remind us that skateboarding’s heuristic usefulness is ontological. Its topos is not that there is a world inside the world, but rather: there is a world the exact shape and texture of the world that you know laid seamlessly over top of it, and you, for some reason, fail to see how beautiful it can be.

Convulsive, vague, and conveyed by slidy looks. Campbell’s subject is our ineffable, binding thing, that lurking, trembling essence that he can only render by images and motions of the surreal. The artist whose art was born from skateboarding has made an object about skateboarding that conveys this birth and mode of being. Skateboarding infects the filmmaker infects the musicians infects the viewer. Viewer goes out skating. Skateboarding is self-perpetuating in this way. It is always itself and something else, it is infectious, it is comprehensive and sublatable to the core. This is how the infinite comes to be—once born, skateboarding can never now die.

But the dreamscape of Cuatros Sueños Pequeños is not an expression of this infinity. Rather, it is mimetic. What world is this?, asks the skateboarder. A familiar one we have seen so many times that it’s rendered unseeable. More importantly, what is to be done in it? The answer, like Campbell’s film, is incoherent, and thank goodness. The answer is anything at all."
skating  skateboarding  skateboards  quantification  measurement  urban  urbanism  surveillance  iainborden  meaning  film  video  robertobolaño  thomascampbell  cuatrosueñospequeños  performance  datazation  repetition  monitoring  failure  documentation  process  capitalism  henrilefebvre  space  place  play  culture  movement  infectiousness  inspiration  feral  ecosystems  socialbeing  time  architecture  landscape  kylebeachy  understanding  experience  robertzemeckis  pontusalv  punk  metrics  schematics  markets  poetics  filmmaking  darkosuvin  sciencefiction  ianmackaye  technology  history  circumstance  california  socal  sports  chinamieville  abcanny  zines  creativity  competition  commercialization  commercialism  commoditization  diy  systems  rules  revolution  resistance  practice  authenticity  artistry  philipevans  philzwijsen  colinkennedy  stasis  motion  austyngillette  mikemanzoori  evanschiefelbine  javiermendizabal  madarsapse  dondelillo  cities  meaninglessness  participation  participatory  democracy  tribes  belonging  identity  spirituality  social  socializati 
july 2014 by robertogreco
César Aira: My ideal is the fairy tale - YouTube
"Interview with Argentinian César Aira who has been called the Marcel Duchamp of Latin America because of his experimental and unpredictable books, heralded by e.g. Roberto Bolaño and Patti Smith. Here Aira talks about his writing and why his books end up like they do.

"You will have to travel to the south of Argentina to find the most original, the most shocking, the most exciting and subversive Spanish-speaking author of our time: César Aira" as put by Spanish newspaper El País. Carlos Fuentes has said that he thinks César Aira will be the first Argentinian to receive the Nobel Prize.

In this interview the Argentine writer César Aira talks about literature in general and his own writing in particular. Specifically he talks of the stories "Ghosts" (1990) and "An Episode in the Life of a Landscape Painter" (2000).

César Aira (b.1949) has published over eighty books of stories, novels and essays, half of which contain less than twenty pages. Since 1993 Aira has written two to four books each year. In this video Aira talks about his writing techniques and opinions and why he prefers writing shorter books. Writing should be story telling in an old fashioned way, much like a fairy tale, a story of something which happened once, to someone else, i.e. not told in the first person or present tense. Airas books may be short, but they are full of layers, he explains, starting perhaps with an experiment or some philosophical idea.

Aira has taught at the University of Buenos Aires (about Copi and Rimbaud) and at the University of Rosario (Constructivism and Mallarmé), and has translated and edited books from France, England, Italy, Brazil, Spain, Mexico, and Venezuela.

César Aira was interviewed by the Danish writer Peter Adolphsen at the Louisiana Literature festival 2012. Adolphsen also translated Aira's words into English in this video."
césaraira  argentina  literature  art  books  robertobolaño  pattismith  writing  carlosfuentes  mallarmé  constructivism  rimbaud  copi  fairytales  firstperson  layering  experimentalbooks  thisisnotabook  presenttense  howwewrite  storytelling  novels  shortstories  everyday  buenosaires  argenchino 
december 2013 by robertogreco
The Femicide Machine | The MIT Press
"In Ciudad Juarez, a territorial power normalized barbarism. This anomalous ecology mutated into a femicide machine: an apparatus that didn’t just create the conditions for the murders of dozens of women and little girls, but developed the institutions that guarantee impunity for those crimes and even legalize them. A lawless city sponsored by a State in crisis. The facts speak for themselves.
—from The Femicide Machine

Best known to American readers for his cameo appearances as The Journalist in Roberto Bolano’s 2666 and as a literary detective in Javier Marías’s novel Dark Back of Time, Sergio González Rodríguez is one of Mexico’s most important contemporary writers. He is the author of Bones in the Desert, the most definitive work on the murders of women and girls in Juárez, Mexico, as well as The Headless Man, a sharp meditation on the recurrent uses of symbolic violence; Infectious, a novel; and Original Evil, a long essay. The Femicide Machine is the first book by González Rodríguez to appear in English translation.

Written especially for Semiotext(e) Intervention series, The Femicide Machine synthesizes González Rodríguez’s documentation of the Juárez crimes, his analysis of the unique urban conditions in which they take place, and a discussion of the terror techniques of narco-warfare that have spread to both sides of the border. The result is a gripping polemic. The Femicide Machine probes the anarchic confluence of global capital with corrupt national politics and displaced, transient labor, and introduces the work of one of Mexico’s most eminent writers to American readers."
ciudadjuarez  juarez  border  borders  mexico  us  robertobolaño  books  toread  sergiogonzálezrodríguez  juárez  ciudadjuárez 
december 2013 by robertogreco
The American Crawl : Rhizomatic Listening: On Shuffling Audiobooks
"And this is what I’ve been thinking about: the shift in narrative as a result of audio shuffle…

Cortazar’s Hopscotch supposedly works in random-ish order.

I think a more controlled chaos could also work. I think of the three parts of Skippy Dies and, considering Paul Murray tells you exactly what happens by the end of the book in the title, wonder how my experience would be altered if I shuffled the three parts of the books. Ditto the five parts (and three bound volumes) of Bolano’s 2666.

I think of Deleuze and Guittari’s notion of the rhizome. A model for looking at research and culture, the notion of the rhizome differs significantly from traditional tree-like hierarchies. Seeing multiple points of entry and exploration, they write that “any point of a rhizome can be connected to anything other, and must be.” The world is shuffled. We curate rhizomatic experience everytime we create a playlist – a digital piñata of randomly falling sonic riches."
harukimurakami  skippydies  theunfortunates  bsjohnson  paulmurray  forthewin  corydoctorow  playlists  ipod  nicholasjaar  gabrielgarcíamárquez  rhizome  2666  robertobolaño  rayuela  hopscotch  randomization  machinemixing  remixing  listening  deleuze&guattari;  shuffling  audiobooks  juliocortázar  shuffle  2012  anterogarcia  remixculture 
december 2012 by robertogreco
Endless Archive : Joanne Mcneil
"Appropriation is thought of as the art of theft – the “great artists steal” maxim literalized. But these fragments of endless archive as tools work like an abstracted droste effect, one into another, into the next. Using custom software, found footage, and metadata, Jodi’s Folksomy plays user-generated YouTube clips like a jukebox. It is not always clear what the social bookmarking-style tags will deliver, even “facebook” or “emo” might offer up a surprise. Clashing and chaotic, delivering image pairings jarring or uncanny, the randomness of Folksomy repurposes the furthest corners of the endless archive. Each video was recorded by someone with some specific purpose in mind, but to the rest of us it seems as pointless as the next user-generated uploaded file. But found footage played simultaneously, sometimes seemingly battling each other, gives the viewer an approximation of the vastness of this archive."
everythingisaremix  remixculture  elisagiardinapapa  coryarcangel  art  collage  juxtaposition  woodyallen  anhedonia  anniehall  gettyimages  aleksabdradomanovic  evanroth  guthrieonergan  nataliebookchin  archivefever  jacquesderrida  documentation  archive  robertobolaño  facebook  tumblr  internet  youtube  folksomy  culture  bricolage  assemblage  remixing  learning  children  creativity  appropriation  micheldemontaigne  macguffin  via:litherland  montaigne 
september 2012 by robertogreco
Why is New York's literary crowd suddenly in thrall to Hungarian fiction? | Hari Kunzru | Books | The Guardian ["this summer, a copy of Sátántangó slung casually on the cafe table is the local masonic sign of literary ambition"]
"The thing about New York (and, a fortiori, the gentrified bits of Brooklyn, where writers go when their Manhattan apartments are expropriated by the One Percent) is that it doesn't have a "contemporary master of the apocalypse". It has post-Ivy relationship anatomists, adderall-enhanced pop culture essayists, dirty realist white-guy novelists and hipster poets who transcribe their sexts and cut them up with Wikipedia entries on HPV and Jersey Shore. It has, at the last count, 247 trillion recent MFA graduates, at least a dozen of which are to be found, on any given morning, abseiling down the glassy exterior of the Random House publishing building, in an attempt to get Sonny Mehta to read their collection of short stories modelled on Denis Johnson's Jesus's Son."

"Odd as it may seem, the utopian yearning for an authentic literary culture is part of a growing current of opposition to the status quo."
culture  ows  occupywallstreet  publishing  trends  books  chadharbach  jonathanfranzen  dondelillo  translation  literaryfiction  jameswood  sonnymehta  statusquo  literature  nyc  lászlókrasznahorkai  robertobolaño  2012 
july 2012 by robertogreco
Roberto Bolaño's essays: More clues for detectives | The Economist
"For Bolaño, even his non-fiction defies clarity. He shows little interest in providing order or streamlining his thoughts. For him, order is a lie. The purpose of both his fiction and non-fiction then is to capture this disorder on the page and make it feel as real as possible. In Bolaño’s writing one can only recognise sanity within the context of insanity. Answers—if there are any—are found not by searching, but in searching.
 
Bolaño was a nomad of the planet and the mind. While much of this collection is standard criticism or brief observations, the pleasure is less in the writing than in experiencing—for just a brief moment—the world of a man immersed in his art."
robertobolaño  nonfiction  nomads  nomadism  essays  neo-nomads  writing  toread  books  fiction 
july 2011 by robertogreco
Who Would Dare? by Roberto Bolaño | NYRBlog | The New York Review of Books
"The books that I remember best are the ones I stole in Mexico City, between the ages of sixteen and nineteen, and the ones I bought in Chile when I was twenty, during the first few months of the coup. In Mexico there was an incredible bookstore. It was called the Glass Bookstore and it was on the Alameda. Its walls, even the ceiling, were glass. Glass and iron beams. From the outside, it seemed an impossible place to steal from. And yet prudence was overcome by the temptation to try and after a while I made the attempt."<br />
<br />
[via: http://ayjay.tumblr.com/post/4063244806/the-books-that-i-remember-best-are-the-ones-i ]
writing  books  robertobolaño 
march 2011 by robertogreco
Sam Anderson on When the Meganovel Shrank - The 00's Issue -- New York Magazine
"What new species of books, then, have proved themselves fit to survive in the attentional ecosystem of the aughts? What kind of novel, if any, can appeal to readers who read with 34 nested browser tabs open simultaneously on their frontal lobes? And, for that matter, what kind of novel gets written by novelists who spend increasing chunks of their own time reading words off screens?"
2000s  bestof  literature  writing  media  books  culture  fiction  newmedia  reading  attention  technology  robertobolaño  googlebooks  samanderson  davidmitchell  michaelchabon  davidfosterwallace  infinitejest  postmodernism  daveeggers  junotdíaz  toread  00s 
december 2009 by robertogreco
Epic Fail | n+1
"2666 is a novel that explicitly invites comparison with such masterpieces—with what it calls, doing a bit of proselytizing on its own behalf, "the great, imperfect, torrential works, books that blaze paths into the unknown." Unlike the books listed above, however, 2666 has been greeted with near unanimous acclaim, stuff like: "Not just the great Spanish-language novel of this decade, but one of the cornerstones that define an entire literature." And: "Bolaño has joined the immortals.""
robertobolaño  literature  2666  chile 
march 2009 by robertogreco
Two new Bolaño novels found among papers left after death | World news | The Guardian
"Two new novels by the Chilean author Roberto Bolaño have reportedly been found in Spain among papers he left behind after his death. The previously unseen manuscripts were entitled Diorama and The Troubles of the Real Police Officer, reported La Vanguardia.
robertobolaño  literature  2666 
march 2009 by robertogreco
Last Evenings On Earth
"Well, it's not dead yet. The modernist idea, which is really a Romantic idea, that the truest art comes from the margins, from the social depths, from revolt and disgust and dispossession, from endless cigarettes and a single worn overcoat, is still, in this age of MFA's and faculty appointments, when Pound's "make it new" long ago became Podhoretz's "making it"--is still, still, however improbably alive. A young man can still get up in a Mexico City bookstore and declare war on the literary establishment, give the finger to coffeehouses and Octavio Paz, plunge like a burning wreck into willed obscurity, toil in poverty for twenty years, and wind up forging, at the cost of youth and health and finally life, works that mark a time and point a new way forward."
robertobolaño  literature  fiction  chile  2666  latinamerica 
march 2009 by robertogreco
A translator's task – to disappear | csmonitor.com
""He was a geographically obsessed writer, especially when it came to Mexico City. He always told you exactly where he was going – down to the street, the intersection, the building," Wimmer remembers. "Café La Habana, for instance, was the basis for Café Quito," an important set piece in "The Savage Detectives." (The book, which traces the literary and political adventures of two ambitious poets, is partly autobiographical.)

"Being in the middle of that was very clarifying, and very useful," Wimmer says. "I found I understood the cultural references better, and had a closer sense of the vibrancy of the place. And that's what I wanted to capture. The book has such a quality of urgency and ease. So many other books I'd read felt willed, and this one didn't. It seemed essential.""
robertobolaño  mexico  mexicodf  place  location  translation  2666  literature  latinamerica  geography  literatura  cities  books  df  mexicocity 
january 2009 by robertogreco
Windows Into the Night
"Never one to proceed by half-measures, Roberto Bolaño dropped out of high school shortly after he decided to become a poet at age 15....Bolaño's own transformation began with a five-year period of isolation. Rather than join the party, he shut himself in his bedroom to consume book after book after book...the book that changed his life was Albert Camus's The Fall, in which a lawyer who hangs out at an Amsterdam bar named Mexico City resigns himself to a life of calculated hypocrisy. Bolaño explains in his essay "Who's the Brave One?" that after reading it, he was possessed by a desire "to read everything, which, in my simplicity, was the same as wanting to or intending to discover the mechanism of chance that had led Camus's character to accept his atrocious fate." ... Unlike many passionate young readers--who knock off two books a week when they're in high school but slow down to three or four a year once adulthood hems them in--Bolaño kept reading all his life."
robertobolaño  reading  youth  chile  mexico  mexicodf  books  literature  albertcamus  autodidacts  dropouts  unschooling  deschooling  self-directedlearning  camus  df  mexicocity 
december 2008 by robertogreco
The Triumph of Roberto Bolaño - The New York Review of Books
"Like Borges—whom he loved and from whom he learned much—Bolaño was attracted to the idea of literature that could speak to the Americas.[2] He introduced a Spanish edition of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and elsewhere suggested that The Savage Detectives had been his stab at an adventure tale in the spirit of Twain. He hinted at another model worth thinking about: Melville, tackling the overwhelming subject of evil in Moby-Dick. Writing a brief note on a book by the Mexican reporter Sergio González Rodríguez, Bolaño sounded a similar theme. In 2002, González Rodríguez published his reportage on hundreds of unsolved murders of women and girls in Ciudad Juárez, just south of the Texas border. The murders had begun to accelerate in the early 1990s, in tandem with the drug trade and a proliferation of new assembly plants for exports."
robertobolaño  borges  2666  literature  chile  autodidacts  selfeducated  nomads  poetry  marktwain  hermanmelville  mobydick  reviews  books  moby-dick 
december 2008 by robertogreco
Book Review - '2666,' by Roberto Bolaño. Translated by Natasha Wimmer - Review - NYTimes.com
"A novel like “2666” is its own preserving machine, delivering itself into our hearts, sentence by questing, unassuming sentence; it also becomes a preserving machine for the lives its words fall upon like a forgiving rain, fictional characters and the secret selves hidden behind and enshrined within them: hapless academic critics and a hapless Mexican boxer, the unavenged bodies deposited in shallow graves. By writing across the grain of his doubts about what literature can do, how much it can discover or dare pronounce the names of our world’s disasters, Bolaño has proven it can do anything, and for an instant, at least, given a name to the unnamable. Now throw your hats in the air."
robertobolaño  2666  harukimurakami  borges  literature  chile 
november 2008 by robertogreco
'2666' by Roberto Bolaño, translated from the Spanish by Natasha Wimmer - Los Angeles Times
"There is an unwittingly funny passage in the Spanish edition of Ignacio Echevarría's introduction to "El Secreto del Mal," a still-untranslated collection of Roberto Bolaño's stories, a passage that could easily have been cribbed from one of Jorge Luis Borges' metafictions or, more to the point, from one of Bolaño's. Echevarría observes that Bolaño's work is "governed by a poetics of incompleteness." Bolaño tends to interrupt his stories with other stories, and those with other tales in turn. He spends page after page building tension, then mischievously buries the climax or neglects it altogether. This makes it difficult to determine, Echevarría laments, which "among the pieces that he did not end up publishing can be considered finished."
robertobolaño  2666  borges  chile  literature 
november 2008 by robertogreco
Marginal Revolution: My favorite things Chile
"José Donoso's The Obscene Bird of Night, while hardly read in the U.S., seems to me one of the most gripping novels of the 20th century...one of the least read first-rate novels I know...not easy going, however..."
josédonoso  chile  literature  tylercowen  fiction  film  travel  lists  pabloneruda  robertobolaño 
august 2008 by robertogreco
The Caracas Speech by Roberto Bolaño - Triple Canopy - The first complete English translation of the Chilean novelist's 1999 speech accepting the Rómulo Gallegos Prize.
"What’s true is that I am Chilean, and I am also a lot of other things. And having arrived at this point, I must abandon Jarry and Bolivar and try to remember the writer who said that the homeland of a writer is his tongue."
latinamerica  translation  speech  literature  robertobolaño  identity  dyslexia  venezuela  chile  colombia  cervantes  books 
july 2008 by robertogreco
YouTube - Chemikyn presenta: Entrevista a Roberto Bolaño 1/6
E"ntrevista realizada por Cristián Warnken a Bolaño, "con Roberto Bolaño estaba nervioso, porque me habían advertido, incluso amigos de él, cuidado este gallo es terrible, es muy mala leche te va a atacar.""
robertobolaño  chile  literature  video  interviews 
april 2008 by robertogreco

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