Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Between 1958 and 1972, author William S. Burroughs undertook a series of radical experiments with alternative compositional modes based on the aleatory form of the Cut-up. Burroughs sold the entirety of his work from the period, assembled into an archive, to a collector in 1972. This study uses performative writing to document a year of archival research in Burroughs' collection, currently housed by The Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature at the New York Public Library. Melding Bakhtin's theories of the chronotope and the grotesque body with creative writing and experimental modes of scholarly production as praxis, I theorize archival research as a uniquely embodied practice. By exploring themes of history, biography, documentation, and discovery, this project identifies Burroughs' use of the Cut-up as a mode of aesthetic collaboration and offers it as a pedagogical model for future critical/creative scholarship.
Document Availability at the Time of Submission
Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.
LeBret, John, "Writing William Burroughs, performing the archive" (2011). LSU Doctoral Dissertations. 233.
Bowman, Ruth Laurion