by Semiotext(e)

Whites, Jews, and Us: Toward a Politics of Revolutionary Love
Houria Bouteldja
Semiotext(e) - 15.00€ -

A scathing critique of the Left from an indigenous anti-colonial perspective.

With Whites, Jews, and Us, Houria Bouteldja launches a scathing critique of the European Left from an indigenous anti-colonial perspective, reflecting on Frantz Fanon's political legacy, the republican pact, the Shoah, the creation of Israel, feminism, and the fate of postcolonial immigration in the West in the age of rising anti-immigrant populism. Drawing upon such prominent voices as James Baldwin, Malcolm X, and Jean Genet, she issues a polemical call for a militant anti-racism grounded in the concept of revolutionary love.

Such love will not come without significant discomfort for whites, and without necessary provocation. Bouteldja challenges widespread assumptions among the Left in the United States and Europe—that anti-Semitism plays any role in Arab-Israeli conflicts, for example, or that philo-Semitism doesn't in itself embody an oppressive position; that feminism or postcolonialist theory is free of colonialism; that integrationalism is a solution rather than a problem; that humanism can be against racism when its very function is to support the political-ideological apparatus that Bouteldja names the "white immune system."

At this transitional moment in the history of the West—which is to say, at the moment of its decline—Bouteldja offers a call for political unity that demands the recognition that whiteness is not a genetic question: it is a matter of power, and it is high time to dismantle it.

"Why am I writing this book? Because I share Gramsci's anxiety: "The old are dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear." The fascist monster, born in the entrails of Western modernity. Of course, the West is not what it used to be. Hence my question: what can we offer white people in exchange for their decline and for the wars that will ensue? There is only one answer: peace. There is only one way: revolutionary love." — from Whites, Jews, and Us

This Semiotext(e)/Intervention series English-language edition includes a foreword by Cornel West.

Nicolas Pages
Guillaume Dustan
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -

An ode to mad love, awarded the Prix de Flore in 1999. 

Published in 1999 and awarded that year's Prix de Flore, Nicolas Pages marks a departure from the Sadean preoccupations of Guillaume Dustan's first three novels; it is, in essence, a love story. Inspired by a failed romance with the Swiss artist-writer Nicolas Pages and collaging texts that Dustan initially produced for a wide variety of other occasions (magazine articles, short stories, project notes, shopping lists, and more), the "auto-/bio-/porno-graphic" prose of Nicolas Pages is by turns trashy and encyclopedic, corporeal and philosophical. Here Dustan inaugurates a "gay literature" that is no longer painful or shameful, but epicurean and cheerful without ever lapsing into idealism. A vibrant plea for gay rights and a tapestried text that is more than the sum of its many styles, Nicolas Pages is a call to explore the body, sexuality, and writing in all their variety; it is a hymn to life, humanity, pleasure, and desire.

Alien Daughters Walk Into the Sun: An Almanac of Extreme Girlhood
Jackie Wang
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -

The early writings of renowned poet and critical theorist Jackie Wang, drawn from her early zines, indie-lit crit, and prolific early 2000s blog. 

Compiled as a field guide, travelogue, essay collection, and weather report, Alien Daughters Walk into the Sun traces Jackie Wang's trajectory from hard femme to Harvard, from dumpster dives and highway bike rides to dropping out of an MFA program, becoming a National Book Award finalist, and writing her trenchant book Carceral Capitalism. Alien Daughters charts the dream-seeking misadventures of an "odd girl" from Florida who emerged from punk houses and early Tumblr to become the powerful writer she is today. Anarchic and beautifully personal, Alien Daughters is a strange intellectual autobiography that demonstrates Wang's singular self-education: an early life lived where every day and every written word began like the Tarot's Fool, with a leap of faith.

Sleepless: A Memoir of Insomnia
Marie Darrieussecq
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -

A restless inquiry into the cultural and psychic sources of insomnia by one of contemporary French literature's most elegant voices.

Plagued by insomnia for twenty years, Marie Darrieussecq turns her attention to the causes, implications, and consequences of sleeplessness: a nocturnal suffering that culminates at 4 a.m. and then defines the next day. “Insomniac mornings are dead mornings,” she observes. Prevented from falling asleep by her dread of exhaustion the next day, Darrieussecq turns to hypnosis, psychoanalysis, alcohol, pills, and meditation. Her entrapment within this spiraling anguish prompts her inspired, ingenious search across literature, geopolitical history, psychoanalysis, and her own experience to better understand where insomnia comes from and what it might mean. There are those, she writes, in Rwanda, whose vivid memories of genocide leave them awake and transfixed by complete horror; there is the insomnia of the unhoused, who have nowhere to put their heads down. The hyperconnection of urban professional life transforms her bedroom from a haven to a dormant electrified node.

Ranging between autobiography, clinical observation, and criticism, Sleepless is a graceful, inventive meditation by one of the most daring, inventive novelists writing today.

Artless: Stories 2019-2023
Natasha Stagg
Semiotext(e) - 17.00€ -  out of stock

Composed of stories, fragmentary essays, and even press releases Stagg has been commissioned to write, Artless captures the media landscape lived and generated in New York during the past half decade. Since the 2016 publication of her debut novel Surveys, Stagg has positioned herself as an in-demand expert on, and critic of, the psychic experience of self-mythology within the cruelly optimistic metaverse of infinite branding. Part voyeur and part participant, Stagg continues her exploration of the branded identity and its elusive, bottomless desire for authenticity.

Natasha Stagg is the author of a novel, Surveys, and a collection, Sleeveless: Fashion, Image, Media, New York 2011-2019. Her essays have appeared in the books Excellences and Perfections, Link in Bio: Art After Social Media, You Had To Be There: Rape Jokes, Intersubjectivity Vol. II: Scripting the Human, and 9th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art: The Present in Drag, among others.

The Complete Fear of Kathy Acker
Jack Skelley
Semiotext(e) - 16.00€ -

Published in excerpts over almost four decades, Jack Skelley’s “secretly legendary” novel is at once an homage to the thrillingly inventive spirit of Kathy Acker’s cut-up novels and a definitive history of LA’s underground culture of the mid-1980s.

Composed in bursts, Fear of Kathy Acker depicts Los Angeles through the eyes of a self-mocking narrator. Shifting styles and personae as he moves between Venice and Torrance, punk clubs and shopping malls, Disneyland and Dodger Stadium, Jack Skelley pushes the limits of language and identity while pursuing–like Kathy Acker–a quixotic literary mix of discipline and anarchy. In this adrenalized, cosmic and comic chronicle of Los Angeles, Skelley's “real life” friends make cameo appearances alongside pop archetypes from Madonna to Billy Idol.

This first-ever complete edition of the book includes new essays, playlists, and a map of the 1980s Los Angeles in which its manic protagonist lives and loves.

Afterword by Sabrina Tarasoff.

Diego Garcia (Semiotext(e) / Native Agents)
Natasha Soobramanien and Luke Williams
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -  out of stock

Edinburgh, 2014. Two writer friends, Damaris and Oliver Pablo, escape London, the city that killed his brother. They spend their days trying to get to the library, bickering over their tanking bitcoin, failing to write or resist the sadness. Then they meet Diego, a poet. He tells them he is named for his mother’s island in the Chagos Archipelago, which she and her community were forced to leave by British soldiers in 1973. Damaris and Oliver Pablo become obsessed with this notorious episode and the continuing resistance of the Chagossian people, and want to write in solidarity. But how to share a story that is not theirs to tell? And how to account for a loss not theirs to grieve? A tragicomedy interrogating the powers of literature alongside the crimes of the British government, Diego Garcia is a collaborative fiction that opens up possibilities for the novel and seeks other ways of living together.

Natasha Soobramanien and Luke Williams are the authors of Genie and Paul and The Echo Chamber, respectively. They used to live in Edinburgh but now live in Brussels, across the park from one another, where they meet up every day for a walk.

Do Everything in the Dark (2023)
Gary Indiana
Semiotext(e) - 17.00€ -

Faced with photos of a once-tumultuous New York art world, the narrator's mind in this scathing, darkly funny novel begins to erupt. Memories jostle for center stage, just as those that they are about always did. These brilliant but broken survivors of the '80s and '90s have now reached the brink of middle age and are facing the challenge of continuing to feel authentic. Luminous with imagery, cackling with bitter humor, and with a new foreword by the author, this roman a cle spares no one.

First published in 2003, Gary Indiana's turn-of-the-millennium novel traces the lives of a loosely connected group of New York artists and the dissolution of their scene.  

During the summer of 2001, the narrator of Do Everything in the Dark, a gallery curator, receives intermittent dispatches from his far-flung friends, many of whom resemble well-known figures in the art and intellectual worlds, who are spread out across the globe, from Istanbul to Provincetown to Santa Fe. Seeking various reprieves from a changed New York, the long-festering, glossed-over incompatibilities of these aging bohemians blossom into exotic and unbearable relief. Beneath the contemporary excesses Indiana chronicles, we can see the outlines of the earlier New York bohemia captured by Dawn Powell.  

Arguably Indiana's most intimate, internal, and compassionate work to date, Do Everything in the Dark is a chilling chronicle of madness and failure, success and disappointment, and the many ways love dies in a world people find increasingly unlivable.

Fassbinder Thousands of Mirrors
Ian Penman
Semiotext(e) - 17.00€ -

A kaleidoscopic study of Rainer Werner Fassbinder. 

Melodrama, biography, cold war thriller, drug memoir, essay in fragments, and mystery, Thousands of Mirrors is cult critic Ian Penman's long-awaited first full-length book: a kaleidoscopic study of Rainer Werner Fassbinder. Written over a short period "in the spirit" of RWF, who would often get films made in a matter of weeks or months, Thousands of Mirrors presents the filmmaker as Penman's equivalent of what Baudelaire was to Benjamin: an urban poet in the turbulent, seeds-sown, messy era just before everything changed. Beautifully written and extraordinarily compelling, echoing the fragmentary works of Roland Barthes and Emil Cioran, Eduardo Galeano and Alexander Kluge, this story has everything: sex, drugs, art, the city, cinema, and revolution.

Revolt, She Said
Julia Kristeva
Semiotext(e) - 15.00€ -

"May '68 in France expressed a fundamental version of freedom: not freedom to succeed, but freedom to revolt. Political revolutions ultimately betray revolt because they cease to question themselves. Revolt, as I understand it—psychic revolt, analytic revolt, artistic revolt—refers to a permanent state of questioning, of transformations, an endless probing of appearances. In this book, Julia Kristeva extends the definition of revolt beyond politics per se. Kristeva sees revolt as a state of permanent questioning and transformation, of change that characterizes psychic life and, in the best cases, art. For her, revolt is not simply about rejection and destruction—it is a necessary process of renewal and regeneration."

The Complete Madame Realism and Other Stories
Lynne Tillman
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -

The Complete Madame Realism and Other Stories gathers together Lynne Tillman's groundbreaking fiction/essays on culture and places, monuments, artworks, iconic TV shows, and received ideas, written in the third person to record the subtle, ironic, and wry observations of the playful but stern "Madame Realism." This new collection also includes the complete stories of Tillman's other persona, the quixotic author Paige Turner (whose investigation of the language of love overshoots any actual experience of it), and additional stories and essays that address figures such as the "Translation Artist" and Cindy Sherman.

Harry Smith: American Magus
Harry Smith
Semiotext(e) - 20.00€ -  out of stock

A privileged look into the life and artistic practice of the experimental filmmaker, music anthologist, and enigmatic polymath Harry Smith.

Best known during his lifetime as an experimental filmmaker and Folkways Records music anthologist, Harry Smith (1923-1991) was a spiritual outsider and one of the most original, influential artists of the mid-century American avant-garde. An avid, inspired collector of old blues and hillbilly recordings during his youth, he became a fan of such bebop jazz as Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, and began making avant-garde film animations featuring patterns painted directly onto the negatives as visual accompaniments to jazz performances. Smith crossed paths with nearly everyone central to the cultural avant-garde; he lived for art and gnosis with little thought for practical consequences. In 1991, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammy Awards in New York.

Five years after Smith's death, the poet Paola Igliori began conducting intimate interviews with the filmmakers, musicians, poets, and artists who knew him best. The result, American Magus Harry Smith, offers a privileged look not only into Smith's life and artistic practice, but also into his era and the informal economy of influence that operated during that time. It provides invaluable insight into the mind of one of the twentieth century's most enigmatic polymaths. This expanded edition includes photos of Smith and many other color images.

Love Me Tender
Constance Debré
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -  out of stock

A novel of lesbian identity and motherhood, and the societal pressures that place them in opposition. 

The daughter of an illustrious French family whose members include a former Prime Minister, a model, and a journalist, Constance Debré abandoned her marriage and legal career in 2015 to write full-time and begin a relationship with a woman. Her transformation from affluent career woman to broke single lesbian was chronicled in her 2018 novel Play boy, praised by Virginie Despentes for its writing that is at once "flippant and consumed by anxiety."  

In Love Me Tender, Debré goes on to further describe the consequences of that life-changing decision. Her husband, Laurent, seeks to permanently separate her from their eight-year old child. Vilified in divorce court by her ex, she loses custody of her son and is allowed to see him only once every two weeks for a supervised hour. Deprived of her child, Debré gives up her two-bedroom apartment and bounces between borrowed apartments, hotel rooms, and a studio the size of a cell. She involves herself in brief affairs with numerous women who vary in age, body type, language, and lifestyle. But the closer she gets to them, the more distant she feels. Apart from cigarettes and sex, her life is completely ascetic: a regime of intense reading and writing, interrupted only by sleep and athletic swimming. She shuns any place where she might observe children, avoiding playgrounds and parks "as if they were cluster bombs ready to explode, riddling her body with pieces of shrapnel."  

Writing graphically about sex, rupture, longing, and despair in the first person, Debré's work is often compared with the punk-era writings of Guillaume Dustan and Herve Guibert, whose work she has championed. As she says of Guibert: "I love him because he says I and he's a pornographer. That seems to be essential when you write. Otherwise you don't say anything." But in Love Me Tender, Debré speaks courageously of love in its many forms, reframing what it means to be a mother beyond conventional expectations.

Indivisible
Fanny Howe
Semiotext(e) - 17.00€ -

The conclusion of a radically philosophical and personal series of Fanny Howe novels animated by questions of race, spirituality, childhood, transience, resistance, and poverty. 

First published by Semiotexte in 2001, Indivisible concludes a radically philosophical and personal series of Fanny Howe novels animated by questions of race, spirituality, childhood, transience, wonder, resistance, and poverty. Depicting the tempestuous multiracial world of artists and activists who lived in working-class Boston during the 1960s, Indivisible begins when its narrator, Henny, locks her husband in a closet so that she might better discuss things with God. On the verge of a religious conversion, Henny attempts to make peace with the dead by telling their stories.

Walking Through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black, New Edition: Collected Stories
Cookie Mueller
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -

The first collected edition of legendary writer, actress, and adventurer Cookie Mueller's stories, featuring the entire contents of her 1990 book Walking through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black, alongside more than two dozen others, some previously unpublished. 

Legendary as an underground actress, female adventurer, and East Village raconteur, Cookie Mueller's first calling was to the written word: I started writing when I was six and have never stopped completely, she once confessed. Muellerís 1990 Walking through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black, the first volume of the Semiotext(e) Native Agents series, was the largest collection of stories she compiled during her life. But it presented only a slice of Mueller's prolific work as a writer. This new, landmark volume collects all of Mueller's stories: from the original contents of Clear Water, to additional stories discovered by Amy Scholder for the posthumous anthology Ask Dr. Mueller, to selections from Mueller's art and advice columns for Details and the East Village Eye, to still new stories collected and published here for the first time. Olivia Laing's new introduction situates Mueller's writing within the context of her life—and our times.  

Thanks to recent documentaries like Mallory Curley's A Cookie Mueller Encyclopedia and Chloé Griffin's oral biography Edgewise, Mueller's life and work have been discovered by a new generation of readers. Walking through Clear Water in a Pool Painted Black: Collected Stories returns essential source material to these readers, the archive of Mueller's writing itself. Mueller's many mise en scènes—the Baltimore of John Waters, post-Stonewall Provincetown, avant-garde Italy, 1980s New York, an America enduring Reagan and AIDS—patches together a singular personal history and a primer for others. As Laing writes in her introduction, Collected Stories amounts to a how-to manual for a life ricocheting joyously off the rails, a live corrective to conformity, conservatism, and cruelty.

The Well-Dressed Wound
Derek McCormack
Semiotext(e) - 14.50€ -  out of stock

A gleeful grotesquerie and savage satire, featuring Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln and the Devil, along with Civil War dead, deconstructed couture, and gay ghosts.

The Well-Dressed Wound is Derek McCormack's play script "séance" a fashion show by the dead for the living. In the depths of the Civil War, in a theater in P. T. Barnum's American Museum on Broadway, Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln participate in a staged spiritualistic rite. But the medium conducting them has invited along another being: the Devil, disguised as twentieth-century French fashionista Martin Margiela (aka "King Faggot"). What follows is the most fiendish runway show ever mounted, complete with war dead, deconstructed couture, and gay ghosts infected with all manner of infectious agents, including oozy AIDS.

While his previous fictions have explored the darker corners of country music, high fashion, and camp, The Well-Dressed Wound is McCormack's most radical work yet, occultishly evoking the evil-twin muses of transgressive literature, Kathy Acker and Pierre Guyotat. The creation thus conjured is a gleeful grotesquerie, a savage satire not so much of fashion as of death, a work that, as Bruce Hainley observes in Artforum, puts "the 'pus' back in opus." Here death and life spin on a viral double helix of contamination and couture, blistering and bandages, history and hysteria, semen and seams. "Being dead is so very now," Hainley opines. "This tiny tome (a time bomb, a tomb) is to die for and radically alive."

Carceral Capitalism
Jackie Wang
Semiotext(e) - 15.00€ -  out of stock

Essays on the contemporary continuum of incarceration: the biopolitics of juvenile delinquency, predatory policing, the political economy of fees and fines, and algorithmic policing.

What we see happening in Ferguson and other cities around the country is not the creation of livable spaces, but the creation of living hells. When people are trapped in a cycle of debt it also can affect their subjectivity and how they temporally inhabit the world by making it difficult for them to imagine and plan for the future. What psychic toll does this have on residents? How does it feel to be routinely dehumanized and exploited by the police?

In this collection of essays in Semiotext(e)'s Intervention series, Jackie Wang examines the contemporary incarceration techniques that have emerged since the 1990s. The essays illustrate various aspects of the carceral continuum, including the biopolitics of juvenile delinquency, predatory policing, the political economy of fees and fines, cybernetic governance, and algorithmic policing. Included in this volume is Wang's influential critique of liberal anti-racist politics, "Against Innocence," as well as essays on RoboCop, techno-policing, and the aesthetic problem of making invisible forms of power legible.

Wang shows that the new racial capitalism begins with parasitic governance and predatory lending that extends credit only to dispossess later. Predatory lending has a decidedly spatial character and exists in many forms, including subprime mortgage loans, student loans for sham for-profit colleges, car loans, rent-to-own scams, payday loans, and bail bond loans. Parasitic governance, Wang argues, operates through five primary techniques: financial states of exception, automation, extraction and looting, confinement, and gratuitous violence. While these techniques of governance often involve physical confinement and the state-sanctioned execution of black Americans, new carceral modes have blurred the distinction between the inside and outside of prison. As technologies of control are perfected, carcerality tends to bleed into society.

 

Bee Reaved
Dodie Bellamy
Semiotext(e) - 17.50€ -  out of stock

A collection of essays from Dodie Bellamy on disenfranchisement, vulgarity, American working class life, aesthetic values, and profound embarrassment.

So. Much. Information. When does one expand? Cut back?  Stop researching? When is enough enough? Like Colette's aging courtesan Lea in the Chéri books, I straddle two centuries that are drifting further and further apart.—Dodie Bellamy, “Hoarding as Ecriture”

This new collection of essays, selected by Dodie Bellamy after the death of Kevin Killian, her companion and husband of thirty-three years, circles around loss and abandonment large and small. Bellamy's highly focused selection comprises pieces written over three decades, in which the themes consistent within her work emerge with new force and clarity: disenfranchisement, vulgarity, American working class life, aesthetic values, profound embarrassment. Bellamy writes with shocking, and often hilarious, candor about the experience of turning her literary archive over to the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Yale and about being targeted by an enraged online anti-capitalist stalker. Just as she did in her previous essay collection, When the Sick Rule the World, Bellamy examines aspects of contemporary life with deep intelligence, intimacy, ambivalence, and calm.

After Kathy Acker
Chris Kraus
Semiotext(e) - 17.50€ -  out of stock

The first authorized biography of postmodernism's literary hero, Kathy Acker.

Acker's life was a fable; and to describe the confusion and love and conflicting agendas behind these memorials would be to sketch an apocryphal allegory of an artistic life in the late twentieth century. It is girls from which stories begin, she wrote in her last notebook. And like other lives, but unlike most fables, it was created through means both within and beyond her control.—from After Kathy Acker

Rich girl, street punk, lost girl and icon… scholar, stripper, victim, and media-whore: The late Kathy Acker's legend and writings are wrapped in mythologies, created mostly by Acker herself. Twenty years after her death, Acker's legend has faded, making her writing more legible.In this first, fully authorized, biography, Chris Kraus approaches Acker both as a writer and as a member of the artistic communities from which she emerged. At once forensic and intimate, After Kathy Acker traces the extreme discipline and literary strategies Acker used to develop her work, and the contradictions she longed to embody. Using exhaustive archival research and ongoing conversations with mutual colleagues and friends, Kraus charts Acker's movement through some of the late twentieth century's most significant artistic enterprises.

The Letters of Mina Harker
Dodie Bellamy
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -  out of stock

In Dodie Bellamy's imagined "sequel" to Bram Stoker's fin de siècle masterpiece Dracula, Van Helsing's plain Jane secretarial adjunct, Mina Harker, is recast as a sexual, independent woman living in San Francisco in the 1980s. The vampire Mina Harker, who possesses the body of author Dodie Bellamy, confesses the most intimate details of her relationships with four vastly different men through past letters. Simultaneously, a plague is let loose in San Francisco-the plague of AIDS.

Bigger-than-life, half goddess, half Bette Davis, Mina sends letter after letter to friends and co-conspirators, holding her reader captive through a display of illusion and longing. Juggling quivering vulnerability on one hand and gossip on the other, Mina spoofs and consumes and spews back up demented reembodiments of trash media and high theory alike. It's all fodder for her ravenous libido and "a messy ambiguous place where pathology meets pleasure." Sensuous and captivating, The Letters of Mina Harker describes one woman's struggles finding the right words to explain her desires and fears without confining herself to one identity.

The Works of Guillaume Dustan (Vol. 1)
Guillaume Dustan
Semiotext(e) - 18.00€ -  out of stock

Guillaume Dustan' first three novels, published in French between 1996 and 1998, describing the narrator's sexual odyssey through a Paris still haunted by AIDS. 

This volume collects a suite of three wildly entertaining and trailblazing short novels by the legendary French anti-assimilationist LGBTQ+ writer Guillaume Dustan. Published sequentially in France between 1996 and 1998, the three novels are exuberant and deliberately affectless accounts of the narrator's sexual odyssey through a Parisian club and bath scene still haunted by AIDS.  

In My Room (1996) takes place almost entirely in the narrator's bedroom. The middle volume, I'm Going Out Tonight (1997) finds him venturing out onto the gay scene in one long night. Finally, in Stronger Than Me(1998) the narrator reflects on his early life, which coincided with the appearance and spread of the AIDS virus in France.  

A close contemporary of Dennis Cooper, Brett Easton Ellis, Kevin Killian, and Gary Indiana, Guillaume Dustan's deadpan autofiction is at once satirical and intimate, and completely contemporary.

Can the Monster Speak?: Report to an Academy of Psychoanalysts
Paul B. Preciado
Semiotext(e) - 16.00€ -  out of stock

Paul Preciado's controversial 2019 lecture at the École de la Cause Freudienne annual conference, published in a definitive translation for the first time. 

In November 2019, Paul Preciado was invited to speak in front of 3,500 psychoanalysts at the École de la Cause Freudienne's annual conference in Paris. Standing in front of the profession for whom he is a mentally ill person suffering from gender dysphoria, Preciado draws inspiration in his lecture from Kafka's Report to an Academy, in which a monkey tells an assembly of scientists that human subjectivity is a cage comparable to one made of metal bars.  

Speaking from his own mutant cage, Preciado does not so much criticize the homophobia and transphobia of the founders of psychoanalysis as demonstrate the discipline's complicity with the ideology of sexual difference dating back to the colonial era, an ideology which is today rendered obsolete by technological advances allowing us to alter our bodies and procreate differently. Preciado calls for a radical transformation of psychological and psychoanalytic discourse and practices, arguing for a new epistemology capable of allowing for a multiplicity of living bodies without reducing the body to its sole heterosexual reproductive capability, and without legitimizing hetero-patriarchal and colonial violence.  

Causing a veritable outcry among the assembly, Preciado was heckled and booed and unable to finish. The lecture, filmed on smartphones, was published online, where fragments were transcribed, translated, and published with no regard for exactitude. With this volume, Can the Monster Speak? is published in a definitive translation for the first time.

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