straight up
"Certainly if writing is to have a future it must at least catch up with the past and learn to use techniques that have been used for some time past in painting, music and film."
William Burroughs and Brion Gysin in Paris

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William Burroughs | Cut-ups <1959>

It was William Burroughs preoccupation with the deconstruction of words and language, most notably through the cut-up and fold-in techniques that he began to develop in 1959 with artist Byron Gysin, which constitutes his most significant contribution to the fragmentary, non-linear approach to contemporary narrative.

Borrowing from the collage technique of visual artists, his method links fragments of texts in surprising juxtapositions, offering unexpected leaps into uncharted territories that attempt to jar and ultimately transform the consciousness of the reader. For this reason, Burroughs refers to himself as "a map maker, an explorer of psychic areas."

For Burroughs, narrative operates as a vast, multi-threaded network that reflects the associative tendencies of the mind, collapsing the boundaries of time and space, drawing attention to previously undetected connections, drawing attention to the links between disparate ideas and elements.