The Initial Burroughs Fascination

This is the place to talk about everything Burroughs.

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DrBenway1210
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Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2015 11:32 pm
Name a Burroughs book: The Ticket That Exploded

The Initial Burroughs Fascination

Post by DrBenway1210 » Sat Aug 20, 2016 3:25 am

Once William was named Old Bull Lee. Right around the book i became aware of Burroughs. After that: Junky, a heavy dosage of cut-ups under the influence, Cities of the Red Night, Yagé and Naked Lunch. All of this in one continuous obsession. Fueling my writing, philosophy and overall approach to everything.

How did you people first become aware of WSB and what is the memory of the experience in this current day and age?

edward_de_vere
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Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2006 6:16 pm

Re: The Initial Burroughs Fascination

Post by edward_de_vere » Sun Aug 21, 2016 3:42 pm

My immediate reason for reading Burroughs back in 1991 (during my second or third year of high school) was the release of Cronenberg's Naked Lunch. In retrospect, the movie was uneven in quality and had almost nothing in common with the novel that it was supposedly "based" on, but I'm still thankful for it having sparked my interest in WSB back then.

However, as I mentioned on another thread, I was reading various writers in the same basic orbit at the time like Beckett and Henry Miller, so I'm sure that I would have stumbled upon Burroughs and NL eventually regardless.

torsrthidesen
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Name a Burroughs book: junky

Re: The Initial Burroughs Fascination

Post by torsrthidesen » Mon Aug 22, 2016 11:56 am

DrBenway1210 wrote:Once William was named Old Bull Lee. Right around the book i became aware of Burroughs. After that: Junky, a heavy dosage of cut-ups under the influence, Cities of the Red Night, Yagé and Naked Lunch. All of this in one continuous obsession. Fueling my writing, philosophy and overall approach to everything.

How did you people first become aware of WSB and what is the memory of the experience in this current day and age?
Good question. And I remember my first encounter clearly. It was a little-known publication (little-known outside Scandinavia) called simply "Beat" (latter renamed "The Pocket Beat" when the paperback came out years later). It contained various excerpts from Beat writers edited by an icleandic-norwegian author and with an original foreword by Ginsberg.
The first text I read, as if my hand was magically lead to the page, was a prose poem by Burroughs. Itself fairly little-known. It was Abstract, from "So Who Owns Death Tv". Translated, but it was just as good as the original. Still give me the goosebomps. And such a weird text to choose for an anthology.

Then I jumped right to "Junkie" and was enthralled.

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davee_mac
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Re: The Initial Burroughs Fascination

Post by davee_mac » Thu Sep 01, 2016 7:36 am

someone asked something similar a while back. I think i said it was a photo from the film of Naked Lunch of "the Burroughs gang" (Weller, Burroughs, Cronenberg) and a mixture of reviews about the book and film in the music press that first piqued my curiosity

i have a vivid memory of finally finding a copy of NL and reading it.... not knowing what to make of it, in the best possible way!

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