American Writers: Supplement XII by Leonard Unger, Jay Parini

By Leonard Unger, Jay Parini

One of the 18 authors within the "Supplement" are Paul Auster, Robert Olen Butler, Peter Cameron, John Knowles, J.D. McClatchy, Ann Patchett and others.

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New York: Semiotext(e), 1991. (Short works. ) Pussy, King of the Pirates. Quarterstick/Touch and GoRecords, 1996. ) Bodies of Work: Essays. New York: Serpent’s Tail Books, 1997. Eurydice in the Underworld. London: Arcadia Books, 1997. (Short works. ) Essential Acker: The Selected Writings of Kathy Acker. Edited by Amy Scholder and Dennis Cooper. New York: Grove, 2002. Rip-off Red, Girl Detective and the Burning Bombing of America. New York: Grove, 2002. CRITICAL AND BIOGRAPHICAL STUDIES Brennan, Karen.

Catherine Rock asserts that R, although he may seem to fall into the category of victim, transforms his pain into a method of moving outside himself, of transgressing the self-other binary. Rock further argues that he experiments with bodily and other forms of consciousness that pain grants him in order to write his poetry. The “memoriam to identity” of the novel’s title, therefore, implies a departure from identity defined as a stable self to the reformulation of a self as process rather than product and an ac- “Airplane” narrates the story of a young woman’s “fall” into the sex industry and her attempt to use male power against itself.

Much of the available biographical information is detailed in Hand to Mouth (1997), a collection whose novella-length title essay limns Auster’s early life and his obsession with the written word. Hand to Mouth also contains three one-act plays Auster wrote in the mid-1970s (the first, Laurel and Hardy Go to Heaven, prefigures his novel The Music of Chance more than a dozen years later); “Action Baseball,” a board game of Auster’s invention; and Squeeze Play, a traditional and derivative mystery novel written under the pseudonym Paul Benjamin.

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