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The Soft Machine: The Restored Text
     

The Soft Machine: The Restored Text

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by William S. Burroughs, Oliver Harris (Editor)
 

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A total assault on the powers that turn humans into machines by writing and fixing our life scripts, Burroughs’ original “cut-up” book was itself rewritten in three different forms. This new edition of The Soft Machine clarifies for the first time the extraordinary history of its writing and rewriting, demolishes the myths of his

Overview


A total assault on the powers that turn humans into machines by writing and fixing our life scripts, Burroughs’ original “cut-up” book was itself rewritten in three different forms. This new edition of The Soft Machine clarifies for the first time the extraordinary history of its writing and rewriting, demolishes the myths of his chance-based writing methods, and demonstrates for a new generation the significance of Burroughs’ greatest experiment. Edited from the original manuscripts by renowned Burroughs scholar Oliver Harris, this revised edition incorporates an introduction and appendices of never before seen materials.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“The voice in The Soft Machine is talking about time. . . . [It] slips deliberately and frequently, sometimes ironically and sometimes not . . . rattles off elliptical allusions, throws away joke after outrageous joke, shifts gear in mid-sentence, never falters. It is precisely this voice—complex, subtle, allusive—that is the fine thing about The Soft Machine and about Burroughs.”—Joan Didion

“One of the most interesting pieces of radical fiction we have.”—The Nation

“[Burroughs’s] great fictions [show] his superb, hard-edged satirical visions of cancerous and addictive consumerism; his elegiac and poetic invocations of sadness and dislocation; his enormous fertility of ideas and imagery.” —Will Self

“Out of the dirt, the excrement, the couplings, Burroughs makes a disgusting, exciting poetry.”—Sunday Times

“The author, no longer raging in obscurity with his devils, has devised a technique, the Cut Up and Pemutation. . . . Burroughs writes, and cuts, and pastes, and adds, and recuts, repastes, rearranges by hazard.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Burroughs is the greatest satirical writer since Jonathan Swift.”—Jack Kerouac

Nation
One of the most interesting pieces of radical fiction we have.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780802122117
Publisher:
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date:
05/06/2014
Edition description:
Revised
Pages:
336
Sales rank:
317,848
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

What People are Saying About This

Jack Kerouac
Burroughs is the greatest satirical writer since Jonathan Swift.
Joan Didion
Burroughs's voice is hard, derisive, inventive, free, funny, serious, poetic, indelibly American, a voice in which one hears transistor radios and old movies and all the cliches and all the cons and all the newspapers, all the peculiar optimism, all the failure....It is precisely this voice -- complex, subtle, allusive -- that is the fine thing about The Soft Machine and about Burroughs.

Meet the Author


William S. Burroughs (1914-1997) was the author of numerous novels, including Junky, Queer Naked Lunch, Nova Express, The Ticket That Exploded, The Soft Machine, and The Wild Boys. He is considered one of the twentieth century's most radical, innovative, and influential writers, and a founding member of the Beat Generation.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
February 4, 1914
Date of Death:
August 2, 1997
Place of Birth:
St. Louis, Missouri
Place of Death:
Lawrence, Kansas
Education:
Los Alamos Ranch School; A.B., Harvard University, 1936; graduate study, 1938

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