Scratches

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Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997 - Biography & Autobiography - 258 pages
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"For me his work is not only a document that enriches our knowledge of man, but also a personal testament that touches me deeply."--Francis Bacon "Scratches" is the first volume in Michel Leiris's monumental four-volume autobiography, "Rules of the Game." In this volume, the celebrated French writer examines his inventory of memories, explores the language of his childhood, weaves anecdotes from his private life with his old and recent ideas. In the end, he so mercilessly scrutinizes what was familiar that its familiarity drops away and it blossoms into something exotic.As Leiris recollects his childhood, his father's recording machine becomes a miraculous object and the letters of the alphabet--from A (or the double ladder of a house painter) to I (a soldier standing at attention) to X (the cross one makes on something whose secret one will never penetrate)--come magically to life. Also here are evocations of Paris under the occupation, his journey to Africa, and meditations on his fear ofdeath, which he tried to exorcise through his autobiographical writings.

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Rules of the game: I, Scratches

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Anthropologist and surrealist poet Leiris, who died in 1990 at age 89, was well known for his autobiographical work. In this first of a four-volume self-study, originally published in 1948, the author ... Read full review

Contents

Songs
17
Alphabet
31
Persephone
64
Copyright

3 other sections not shown

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About the author (1997)

Georges Bataille (1897-1962) was an essayist, philosophical theorist and novelist, often called the 'metaphysician of evil', interested in sex, death, degradation and the power and potential of the obscene. His most famous work is the highly-charged erotic novella, "The Story of the Eye," Michel Leiris (1901-1990) was a novelist, poet, art-critic and anthropologist, particularly interested in the cultures of Africa, the Carribean and Central America. His best known writings include "Manhood, The Rules of the Game "and "Phantom ""Africa,

Lydia Davis is a writer and translator. She is a professor of creative writing at the University at Albany, SUNY, and was a Lillian Vernon Distinguished Writer-in-Residence at New York University in 2012. Davis has published six collections of short stories, including The Thirteenth Woman and Other Stories (1976) and Break It Down (1986), a Finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award. Her most recent collection was Varieties of Disturbance, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 2007 and a Finalist for the National Book Award. Davis' stories are acclaimed for their brevity and humor. Many are only one or two sentences. Her book Can't and Won't made the New York Times Bestseller List in 2014. She has also translated Proust, Flaubert, Blanchot, Foucault, Michel Leiris, Pierre Jean Jouve and other French writers, as well as the Dutch writer A.L. Snijders. In October 2003 Davis received a MacArthur Fellowship. She was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2005. Davis was announced as the winner of the 2013 Man Booker International Prize on 22 May 2013. Davis won £60,000 as part of the biennial award.

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