Anthology of Black Humor
Anthology of Black Humor
Translated by Mark Polizzotti

This is the first publication in English of the anthology that contains Breton's definitive statement on l'humour noir, one of the seminal concepts of Surrealism, and his provocative assessments of the writers he most admired. While some of the authors featured in the Anthology of Black Humor are already well known to American readers-Swift, Kafka, Rimbaud, Poe, Lewis Carroll, and Baudelaire among them (and even then, Breton's selections are often surprising)-many others are sure to come as a revelation.

The entries range from the acerbic aphorisms of Swift, Lichtenberg, and Duchamp to the theatrical slapstick of Christian Dietrich Grabbe, from the wry missives of Rimbaud and Jacques Vache to the manic paranoia of Dali, from the ferocious iconoclasm of Alfred Jarry and Arthur Craven to the offhand hilarity of Apollinaire at his most spontaneous. For each of the forty-five authors included, Breton has provided an enlightening biographical and critical preface, situating both the writer and the work in the context of black humor-a partly macabre, partly ironic, and often absurd turn of spirit that Breton defined as "a superior revolt of the mind."

Praise for Anthology of Black Humor:

"Anthologies can aim to be groundbreaking or thought-provoking; few can be said to have introduced a new phrase—or a new concept—into the language. No one had ever used the term "black humour" before this one came along, unless, perhaps, it was from a racial angle." —The Guardian

Praise City Lights for making this book available in English (and keeping it in print). Praise Mark Polizzotti for his superb translation. Praise André Breton for dreaming up this infamous anthology—a hand-picked menagerie of poets and writers who evidenced what he called 'a superior revolt of the mind.'" —DingBat Magazine

Title Anthology of Black Humor
Author André Breton
Translated by Mark Polizzotti
Publisher City Lights Publishers
Title First Published 01 May 1997
Format Paperback
Nb of pages 356 p.
ISBN-10 0872863212
ISBN-13 9780872863217
Publication Date 01 May 1997
Main content page count 356
Weight 16 oz.
List Price $26.95

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