Nazi Literature in the Americas

Front Cover
New Directions Publishing, May 29, 2009 - Fiction - 240 pages
13 Reviews

A "biographical dictionary" gathering 30 brief accounts of poets, novelists and editors (all fictional) who espouse fascist or extremely right-wing political views.

Nazi Literature in the Americas was the first of Roberto Bolano's books to reach a wide public. When it was published by Seix Barral in 1996, critics in Spain were quick to recognize the arrival of an important new talent. The book presents itself as a biographical dictionary of American writers who flirted with or espoused extreme right-wing ideologies in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. It is a tour de force of black humor and imaginary erudition.

Nazi Literature in the Americas is composed of short biographies, including descriptions of the writers' works, plus an epilogue ("for Monsters"), which includes even briefer biographies of persons mentioned in passing. All of the writers are imaginary, although they are all carefully and credibly situated in real literary worlds. Ernesto Pérez Masón, for example, in the sample included here, is an imaginary member of the real Orígenes group in Cuba, and his farcical clashes with José Lezama Lima recall stories about the spats between Lezama Lima and Virgilio Pinera, as recounted in Guillermo Cabrera Infante's Mea Cuba. The origins of the imaginary writers are diverse. Authors from twelve different countries are included. The countries with the most representatives are Argentina (8) and the USA (7).
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - V.V.Harding - LibraryThing

Only four stars for this engaging work of a prodigious and bitter imagination, because compared to his other work, it provides less latitude for his particular genius. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Praj05 - LibraryThing

Bolano puts forth a compilation of 30 peculiar biographies of fictitious Pan American writers in the 20th century accentuating quite a few brazen out supremacists, interlaced with the triviality of ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
15
Section 3
19
Section 4
31
Section 5
37
Section 6
45
Section 7
47
Section 8
49
Section 16
101
Section 17
104
Section 18
108
Section 19
113
Section 20
116
Section 21
119
Section 22
120
Section 23
127

Section 9
54
Section 10
61
Section 11
68
Section 12
75
Section 13
85
Section 14
89
Section 15
92
Section 24
137
Section 25
141
Section 26
149
Section 27
151
Section 28
157
Section 29
161
Section 30
179

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About the author (2009)

The poet Chris Andrews teaches at the University of Western Sydney, Australia, where he is a member of the Writing and Society Research Center. He has translated books by Roberto Bola o and C sar Aira for New Directions.

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