Mouroir: Mirrornotes of a Novel

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Archipelago Books, 2009 - Fiction - 279 pages
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Breytenbach composed this docu-dream during a period of incarceration. Mouroir (mourir: to die + miroir: mirror) is a ship of thought moving with its own hallucinatory logic through a sea of mythic images, protean characters and what the author describes as ?landscapes and spaces beyond death, spaces that have always existed and will always exist.” An Orphic voyage into memory and mirage, through passages between death and life, darkness and light, oppression and flight, sense and the sensed. Mouroir.

An outspoken human rights activist, Breyten Breytenbach is a poet, novelist, memoirist, essayist, and visual artist. His paintings and drawings have been exhibited around the world. Born in South Africa, he immigrated to Paris in the late '60s and became deeply involved in the anti-Apartheid movement. Breytenbach is the author of All One Horse, A Season in Paradise, The True Confessions of an Albino Terrorist, Dog Heart, and The Memory of Birds in Times of Revolution, among many others. He received the Alan Paton Award for Return to Paradise in 1994 and the prestigious Hertzog Prize for Poetry for Papierblom in 1999 and for Die Windvanger (Windcatcher) in 2008.

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User Review  - Bbexlibris - LibraryThing

Breyten Breytenbach is not a man who stays away from causing a wave or making a ripple. But he seems more likely to be driven toward throwing himself into the water as a cannon ball to get things ... Read full review


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About the author (2009)

Now, in retrospect, it is difficult to remember exactly how or precisely when it happened. You should be like the elephant, the animal which can remember all its earlier lives in visions, which stands there contemplating without moving, and then chews the cud: grass, all grass. A life is the metamorphosis of the earlier one(s). A clever man has said – if civilizations can survive only through metamorphosis then the world consists of that which has been forgotten. (But another sly one objected that the living constitute the memory – event and thought – of the dead.) I’d love to see and to recognize a black elephant. Black he must be, but not rubbery. Rather more like silk. Silk that by candlelight has a silvery skin as if of frozen dew when day breaks over the dunes. And its eyes must be huge and dark, and mild, a concentration of the night, the night bumped; and with long eyelashes.

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