Category Archives: william gaddis

Gaddis’ First Story . . . In Spanish

The March issue of Letras y Libres has republished the first story William Gaddis ever published in English. It originally appeared in the July 1951 issue of The Atlantic, and it was called (retranslating from Spanish) "Stopping the Player Piano."

Here's a quote:

La industria, probablemente por elemental decencia, construyó diez mil pianos de cola en 1914, pero de los 325.000 que se construyeron en total 80.000 fueron pianolas. Los reparadores de pianos, que habían comenzado a trabajar por vocación sin nada que temer de las regularidades del pianoforte, se encontraron entonces inundados de libros, carpetas y diagramas en los que se les explicaban las maravillas de la
neumática. En ese mismo año se inauguró en Nueva York la Danquard Player Action School, donde se impartían cursos exhaustivos sobre mecánica de la interpretación, y también hubo algunas academias por correspondencia que cubrían las necesidades de los nuevos profesionales.

For more on Gaddis, see our essay from Issue 14.

LADY CHATTERLEY'S BROTHER

Two long essays of 10,000 words each on sex in—and out of—literature . . .

The first essay dives in to Nicholson Baker’s “sex trilogy,” explaining just what Baker is up to here and why these books ultimately fail to be as sexy as Baker might wish.

From there the book moves on to the second essay, which explains just why Spaniard Javier Marías does right what Baker does wrong . . .


THE LATIN AMERICAN MIXTAPE

5 essays. 2 interviews.

All in all, over 25,000 words of Latin American literary goodness.

3 never-before-published essays, including “The Digression”—a 4,000-word piece on the most important digression in César Aira’s career.

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