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I Love Dick (Semiotext(e) / Native Agents) [Paperback]

Our Price $ 13.56  
Retail Value $ 15.95  
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Item Number 448845  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   277
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 6.25" Height: 9"
Weight:   0.95 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 2006
Publisher   Semiotext(e)
Age  22
ISBN  1584350342  
EAN  9781584350347  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
In I Love Dick, published in 1997, Chris Kraus, author of Aliens & Anorexia, Torpor, and Video Green, boldly tore away the veil that separates fiction from reality and privacy from self-expression. It's no wonder that I Love Dick instantly elicited violent controversies and attracted a host of passionate admirers.

The story is gripping enough: in 1994 a married, failed independent filmmaker, turning forty, falls in love with a well-known theorist and endeavors to seduce him with the help of her husband. But when the theorist refuses to answer her letters, the husband and wife continue the correspondence for each other instead, imagining the fling the wife wishes to have with Dick. What follows is a breathless pursuit that takes the woman across America and away from her husband---and far beyond her original infatuation into a discovery of the transformative power of first person narrative.

I Love Dick is a manifesto for a new kind of feminist who isn't afraid to burn through her own narcissism in order to assume responsibility for herself and for all the injustice in world---and it's a book you won't put down until the author's final, heroic acts of self-revelation and transformation.

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More About Chris Kraus

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! The author of four novels, the most recent of which is "Summer of Hate", and two books of criticism, Chris Kraus was recently described by the "New York Observer" as "the art world's favorite fiction writer." She teaches at European Graduate School and lives in Los Angeles.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
A New Low for Academic Onanism  Jul 21, 2007
It's no secret that the academy aids and abets the various psychoses and neuroses of bookish female wrecks and the pantywaists who willfully endure and even indulge their rubbish. Dick's only sin is that he is too cool and too wise to their games and refuses to play. The man's a prince and this sad, pathetic lady knows it all to well but can't help herself. David Lodge tried to lampoon the academy but he's in diapers compared to this woman's effortless and shameless escapades in self-parody which echo out a collective indictment into the halls of every institution that has taken post-structuralism and its attendant nonsense seriously. Baby, when you're standing in hole, stop digging.
for anyone who has loved a dick  Jul 17, 2004
this book gives one an intricate look inside the mind of a married woman wrestling with the emotions of love and lust for a man who objectifies himself to her cause. while dick is the source of adornment and folly, chris's unsupported love is forced to take on new forms. a vicarious adventure in which the concept of love (for self and other) can be explored.
Fanx  Feb 29, 2000
This is a great book, Do buy it. I concur with the other reviewers especially the Aussie woman. Chris, thanks for the honourable mention. Hope that 'Aliens & Anorexia' is an even greater success
WOW  Sep 26, 1999
Okay, it's not a perfect book. It's scary and self-indulgent and could have been trimmed. Yet ... it sticks with me like few things I've read this year. I heard it set off a firestorm n the art world, and I can see why. It's rare to see female anger come out so real, so raw. I bet most men hate this book.

There's a party scene in this book that is the most honest thing I've ever read about female humiliation -- always being the "plus one" of some guy, or ignored for the prettier girls.

I think it's a little too real and that scares people (men and women alike).

I Love Dick Embraces Failure With Style  Jan 20, 1999
This intriguingly titled volume is authored by Chris Kraus, a New Zealand-born alternative film-maker and teacher, now based in LA and New York. Married to Sylvere Lottringer, progenitor of the Semiotext(e) publishing house and cult intellectual, Kraus is concerned to prove that she has a fierce intellect of her own. Obviously a fan of experimentation, Kraus has produced a book which consists of a pastiche of letters, old art reviews, travelogues, essays and philosophical pronouncements. I Love Dick begins with a crush and develops into a full-scale reworking of the epistolary novel. Ostensibly, the narrative arises from Kraus' pursuit of her husband's academic colleague named Dick. With her husband's somewhat hesitant blessing, Kraus constructs this affair then views it as a text and attempts deconstruction. This story of manufactured desire also delivers a vivid portrait of Kraus' life to date. This involves intimate insights into her chequered past including descriptions of her Crohns disease and anorexia as well as providing glimpses of various sexual encounters, public humiliations and minor triumphs. In fact, much of the book is devoted to the project of reclaiming her past and making sense of it. She says she aims to 'avenge the ghost of her former self' by putting down the 'dirty, murky and complex' elements of her experience in writing. I Love Dick attempts the near impossible task of dealing with dumb infatuation in a brilliantly self-reflexive way. For Kraus, Dick is an object of affection, a sounding-board, a symptom of malaise and despite his indifference to her advances, a solution of sorts. As a way of explaining her process Kraus says:' When I met Dick I saw the two of us falling into the quintessential rock n' roll romance seduction, and I wanted us to play it out together as grown-ups. He didn't want to, but he also never said he didn't want to, so I took that as permission to play..' Her belief in a kind of Kierkegaardian performative philosophy makes her recognise situations and move with them, even if this involves a degree of manipulation and exaggeration. As the protagonist as well as the narrator of this drama, she has the remarkable ability to be passionate and analytical simulataneously. Even at the height of this 'amour fou', there is a detached, ironic quality to her eloquently rendered observations. Kraus' ability to actively involve her husband is this particular 'art project' is testament to her belief that hetrosexuality may be lived differently. She says: 'I wanted to figure out heterosexuality before turning 40 because I wouldn't get another chance.' Knowingly, she uses her charms to insert herself between two intellectual men - Sylvere & Dick - as a challenge to their academic composure. However, she soon realises that the admiration and respect that exists between Dick and Sylvere poses more of a threat to her own subjectivity than to their friendship. Apparently, this amorous project arose directly from the failure of Kraus' film-making. The mixed reception of her films led her question her methods and to branch out in a more literary direction. As a consequence, she embarks on a hopeless affair as away of discussing failure itself. She writes to Dick about how she has shed her former ambitions in favour of love of him: 'Embracing you and failure has changed all that cause now I know I am no-one. And there's a lot to say..' This recognition of her own insignificance furnishes her with the freedom to express herself as she could never do before. Though she paints a rather unflattering portrait of Dick's character, Kraus is most critical of her own personality traits. As one reviewer has said of her writing : 'She makes self-esteem appear as some sort of gross pretension.' While this text may appear to be the mad ravings of an erotomaniac with a penchant for self-dramatisation, it would be a mistake to underestimate its concerns. Kraus sees her descent into the vortex of infatuation as an avowedly feminist journey. In al letter to Dick she tries to explain her reasons for launching into a correspondence of such Proustian intensity: 'No matter how dispassionate or large a vision of the world a woman formulates, whether it includes her own experience and emotion, the telescope's turned back on her. Because emotion is just so terrifying and the world refuses to believe it can be pursued as discipline, as form. Dear Dick, I want to make my the world more interesting than my problems. therefore I have to make my problems social.' The author's willingness to name names and to record gossipy elements of real-life could give the impression that this book is a transparently artless 'roman a clef'. While she seems to be aiming for a devastatingly 'honest' account of her life and loves, the reader would be well advised to avoid any easy conflation of the fictional and real Kraus. She never rules out the possibility of a part or total fabrication of her persona or her autobiographical stories. The debate about whether these events 'really' happened tends to ignore the sophistication of its criticism of literary conceits and its referencing of conceptual art through its documentation of process. The deliberately radical nature of the novel has prompted vitriolic responses. Aside from questions of libel, one of the reasons why the book has been heavily criticised is that it doesn't fit into any particular genre. I Love Dick playfully blurs the lines between literary categories in a way that is guaranteed to unsettle most readerly preconceptions. An unfavourable review in Art Forum described the book as being ' not so much written as secreted'. This accusation, with its overtly misogynist overtones, may be countered by invoking Susan Sontag's famous essay 'On Style' which contends that 'the greatest art seems secreted, not constructed.'

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