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Wednesday August 17, 2011 in Books
Famous and celebrated since the 1960s for pushing the boundaries of language and representation in the creation of image as a site of both content and context, the world’s leading sound, visual, concrete and performance poet, bill bissett, describes this book as “a novel with connekting pomes n essays.”
Having already extended the boundaries of orthography, syntax, grammar, punctuation and diction to free the linguistic creation of meaning from the conventions of the spoken and the written word—often with arresting and astonishing results—bissett sets out in his newest work to free and rehabilitate genre from its traditional role of limiting the possibilities of meaning in language, to greatly expanding them. He accomplishes this without a deconstructive erasure of, but with an apposition of genres that expands even further the possibilities of creating meaning through composition.
As such, bissett’s novel is in effect a response, by demonstrative example, to Jacques Derrida’s famous argument in Of Grammatology: that any investigation of meaning cannot escape the opposition or dialectic of speech and language central to the Western philosophical tradition. Against this tradition, bissett posits Gertrude Stein’s modernist observation that: “Everything is the same except composition …”
None of which is to say that bill bissett’s novel is a five-finger exercise in the realm of pure theory. Quite on the contrary, his interweaving of fact and fiction—what is considered the conventionally real with the imagined—has created a narrative for the reader that is redolent with surprise and discovery. The counterpoint of the “fictional” story of jimmee’s search for his lost love mark, to the lives of the “real” characters that people the “pomes n essays” with which it interacts, takes readers of this novel to entirely new and engaging understandings of that part of the human condition that is delightfully accessible through language.
ISBN 13: 9780889226715 | ISBN 10: 889226717
6 W x 9 H x .45 D inches | 176 pages
$17.95 CAN / $17.95 US
Backlist | Fiction | Bisac: POE000000
QUOTES OF NOTE
“These essays are rich with information about bissett, but most importantly they revive and re-examine significant moments from his life and career. It is a must-read for both bissett scholars and fanatics alike.” —Broken Pencil
About the Contributorsbill bissett
bill bissett’s charged readings, which never fail to amaze his audiences, incorporate sound poetry, chanting and singing, the verve of which is only matched by his prolific writing career—over seventy books of bissett’s poetry have been published. whether paying tribute to his hometown lunaria or exercising his native tongue dissent, bissett continues to dance upon the cutting edge of poetics and performance works.
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF); and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.