By Raymond Roussel
Poet, novelist, playwright, and chess fanatic, Raymond Roussel (1877-1933) was once one of many French belle époque's such a lot compelling literary figures. in the course of his lifetime, Roussel's paintings used to be vociferously championed by means of the surrealists, yet by no means completed the common popularity of which he yearned. New Impressions of Africa is unquestionably Roussel's so much outstanding paintings. on account that its book in 1932, this bizarre poem has slowly received cult prestige, and its admirers have integrated Salvador Dalì--who dubbed it the main "ungraspably poetic" paintings of the era--André Breton, Jean Cocteau, Marcel Duchamp, Michel Foucault, Kenneth Koch, and John Ashbery.
Roussel begun writing New Impressions of Africa in 1915 whereas serving within the French military throughout the First international battle and it took him seventeen years to accomplish. "It is difficult to think the large period of time composition of this type of verse requires," he later commented. Mysterious, unnerving, hilarious, haunting, either carefully logical and dizzyingly elegant, it's really one of many hidden masterpieces of twentieth-century modernism.
This bilingual variation of New Impressions of Africa provides the unique French textual content and the English poet Mark Ford's lucid, idiomatic translation on dealing with pages. additionally it is an creation outlining the poem's odd constitution and evolution, notes explaining its literary and ancient references, and the fifty-nine illustrations anonymously commissioned through Roussel, through a detective organisation, from Henri-A. Zo.