Reports from the Bibliographic Bunker
Jed Birmingham on William S. Burroughs Collecting
“Naked Lunch is a blueprint, a How-To book . . . . Black insect lusts open into vast planet landscapes . . . . Abstract concepts, bare as algebra, narrow down to a black turd or a pair of aging cajones . . . . How-To extend levels of experience by opening the door at the end of a long hall . . . . Doors that only open in Silence”
“Ketch. But what’s the angle. . . . Books . . .” — William S. Burroughs, Naked Lunch
Within the pages of Naked Lunch, William Burroughs maps Interzone. There is the Composite City; there is a political system; there is a bureaucratic structure; there is a University, a marketplace. There is also a library. Naked Lunch is the book that contains all books — an “endless novel” that spills in every direction, a Tower of Babel, a labyrinth, a hypertext, a feedback circuit on a computer chip.
Here is a small sampling of that library. These books were chosen because they were all annotated. Possessed.
- PS3552.U75 J8 1957
- SPEC.CMS.85 Folder 1
- Berg Coll Burroughs S64 1961
- MSS 618 Box 1 F5
- PZ4.B972 Bl
- PS3552.U75 Q8 1985
- Preliminary Inventory: Reg. no. 15385, Box 6, Folder 6