Paul Auster is one of the most acclaimed figures in American literature. Known primarily as a novelist, Auster's films and various collaborations are now gaining more recognition. Evija Trofimova offers a radically different approach to the author's wider body of work, unpacking the fascinating web of relationships between his texts and presenting Auster's canon as a rhizomatic facto-fictional network produced by a set of writing tools. Exploring Auster's literal and figurative use of these tools - the typewriter, the cigarette, the doppelganger figure, the city - Evija Trofimova discovers Auster's "writing machine", a device that works both as a means to write and as a construct that manifests the emblematic writer-figure. This is a book about assembling texts and textual networks, the writing machines that produce them, and the ways such machines invest them with meaning. Embarking on a scholarly quest that takes her from between the lines of Auster's work to between the streets of his beloved New York and finally to the man himself, Paul Auster's Writing Machine becomes not just a critical investigation but a critical collaboration, raising important questions about the ultimate meaning of Auster's work, and about the relationship between texts, their authors, their readers and their critics.
Through the work of Paul Auster, this book explores the relationship between texts and the writing tools used to produce them.
Evija Trofimova (PhD, University of Auckland) is a writer, translator and critic who divides her time between Latvia and New Zealand.
Acknowledgements List of Illustrations Preface Introduction: Paul Auster's Intratext Uncontainable Assemblages "Thinging" Things Chapter 1: Smoke that Means the Entire World The Writer's Prosthetic Cigarette The Gathering of the Tobacco Shop Smoke is the Story Itself Chapter 2: The Story of the Typewriter Typewriter Associations The Typewriter-Assemblage Rhizomatic Typewriting The Machinic Muse Chapter 3: Doubles and Disappearances The Birth of the Double The Double Functions of the Double The Doppelganger in the Other Sex Double Game, and the Mingling of Texts Gotham Handbook Chapter 4: New York, Where All Quests Fail In Search of Auster's City In Austeralia Discovering the Notebooks Encountering the Writer Inconclusion Notes Bibliography Copyright Permissions Index