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Antonin Artaud, Stephen Barber (ed.): Radio Works: 1946–48

Antonin Artaud, Stephen Barber (ed.)

Radio Works: 1946–48

Translated by Stephen Barber and Clayton Eshleman

With a foreword by Ros Murray

Softcover, 128 pages

Date of publication: 16.06.2021

In the last two years of his life, following his release from the Rodez asylum, Antonin Artaud decided he wanted his new work to connect with a vast public audience, and chose to record radio broadcasts in order to carry through that aim. That determination led him to his most experimental and incendiary project, To have done with the judgement of god, 1947-48, in which he attempted to create a new language of texts, screams, and cacophonies: a language designed to be heard by millions, aimed, as Artaud said, for ‘road-menders’. In the broadcast, he interrogated corporeality and introduced the idea of the ‘body without organs’, crucial to the later work of Deleuze and Guattari. The broadcast, commissioned by the French national radio station, was banned shortly before its planned transmission, to Artaud’s fury.

 

This volume collects all of the texts for To have done with the judgement of god, together with several of the letters Artaud wrote to friends and enemies in the short period between his work’s censorship and his death. Also included is the text of an earlier broadcast from 1946, Madness and Black Magic, written as a manifesto prefiguring his subsequent broadcast. Clayton Eshleman’s extraordinary translations of the broadcasts activate these works in their extreme provocation.

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Antonin Artaud

Antonin Artaud

(1896–1948) is one of the seminal figures of twentieth century writing, art and sound experimentation, known especially for his work with the Surrealist movement, his performance theories, his asylum incarcerations, and his artworks which have been exhibited in major exhibitions, at New York’s MOMA and many other art-museums.

Stephen Barber

is the author of twenty-five books, including seven novels, most recently White Noise Ballrooms and The Projectionists. Eadweard Muybridge and the Future Projections of the Moving Image. He has received several awards for his books, which have been translated into many languages, such as Japanese and Chinese. The Independent newspaper (London) once called him “the most dangerous man in Europe.” He is a professor at the Kingston School of Art, Kingston University, London, and a visiting research fellow at the Free University Berlin and Keio University Tokyo.
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