André Breton: Selections

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University of California Press, 2003 - Literary Criticism - 176 pages
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"This is a kind of "essence of Breton", variously translated by some of our finest writers, each of whom highlights different facets of Breton's complex work. Mark Polizzotti's useful introduction provides context and a brief analysis of the artist and his times."—Diane di Prima, author of Recollections of My Life as a Woman

"Mark Polizzotti, who is a poet, a translator, and the author of the definitive biography of André Breton, has chosen stellar translations of Breton's dazzling poetry and placed it in its lively context. This shapely introduction to the life and work of André Breton is smart, concise, and exciting. I cannot imagine a better one."—Ron Padgett, poet and translator of The Complete Poems of Blaise Cendrars

"The Poets for the Millennium Series generally and André Breton's Selected Works specifically offers a workable image of an author and the work and the conjuncture, all at once. What comes across is a vivid presentation of Andre Breton not just as an art czar, a manifesto merchant, but a serious, haunted, inventive and strangely profound poet of the imagination, who invented or archeologized new ways of dreaming, but insisted on bearing witness with them in the actual world. Polizzotti does justice--as I think no other writer has--to the double burden of Breton's work."—Robert Kelly

"A superbly chosen selection of Breton's poetry and prose, translated in every case with an elegant intelligence, and preceded by an unusually thorough introduction showing quite exactly how the poet's life informed each epoch of his work. It proves again the remarkable un-boringness of Breton, and how important he is now to our own poetry and to us.—Mary Ann Caws, author of The Surrealist Look: An Erotics of Encounter and editor of The Surrealist Painters and Poets

 

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Contents

PHRASES KNOCKING AT THE WINDOW
1
KEY TO TRANSLATORS
45
POEMS
49
WAY
50
AGE
52
BLACK FOREST
53
FOR LAFCADIO
54
MISTER V
55
A BRANCH OF NETTLE ENTERS THROUGH THE WINDOW
96
LETHAL RELIEF
98
IN THE LOVELY HALFLIGHT OF 1934
100
IT WAS GOING ON FIVE IN THE MORNING
102
ALWAYS FOR THE FIRST TIME
104
FULL MARGIN
106
FROM FATA MORGANA
111
WAR
116

THE MYSTERY CORSET
57
FROM THE MAGNETIC FIELDS
58
COUNTERFEIT COIN
61
PSST
63
NO WAY OUT OF HERE
65
IN THE EYES OF THE GODS
67
CHOOSE LIFE
69
SUNFLOWER
71
ANGLE OF SIGHT
73
FROM SOLUBLE FISH
76
MAKE IT SO DAYLIGHT
78
I LISTEN TO MYSELF STILL TALKING
80
THE WRITINGS DEPART
81
THE FOREST IN THE AXE
83
NO GROUNDS FOR PROSECUTION
85
AFTER THE GIANT ANTEATER
87
FREE UNION
89
CURTAIN CURTAIN
92
VIGILANCE
94
DREAMS
118
KORWAR
119
RANO RARAKU
120
ON THE ROAD TO SAN ROMANO VERSION 1
121
ON THE ROAD TO SAN ROMANO VERSION 2
124
LE LA
126
SUBJECT
129
THE NEW SPIRIT
132
FROM THE DISDAINFUL CONFESSION
134
THREE DREAMS
140
FROM MANIFESTO OF SURREALISM
143
BURIAL DENIED
151
FROM SECOND MANIFESTO OF SURREALISM
152
SIMULATION OF GENERAL PARALYSIS ESSAYED
158
FROM THE AUTOMATIC MESSAGE
161
CHRONOLOGY
165
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
168
SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
173
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About the author (2003)

Mark Polizzotti is the author of Revolution of the Mind: The Life of Andre Breton (1995), Lautreamont Nomad (1994), The New Life: Poems (1998), and S: a novel (1997). He has translated the work of Andre Breton, Rene Daumal, Jean Echenoz, and Marguerite Duras, among others.

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