The Unknown University

Roberto Bolaño (Author) Laura Healy (Translator)
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Perhaps surprisingly to some of his fiction fans, Roberto Bolano touted poetry as the superior art form, able to approach an infinity in which you become infinitely small without disappearing. When asked, What makes you believe you re a better poet than a novelist? Bolano replied, The poetry makes me blush less. The sum of his life s work in his preferred medium, The Unknown University is a showcase of Bolano s gift for freely crossing genres, with poems written in prose, stories in verse, and flashes of writing that can hardly be categorized. Poetry, he believed, is braver than anyone.

Product Details

$39.95  $36.75
New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publish Date
July 11, 2013
5.86 X 1.9 X 8.33 inches | 2.26 pounds
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About the Author

Natasha Wimmer is a translator who has worked on Roberto Bolaño's 2666, for which she was awarded the PEN Translation prize in 2009, and The Savage Detectives. She lives in New York.
Laura Healy has received a Master's in Spanish from Harvard. She is the managing editor of Harvard Review and the web editor of Zoland Poetry


The Unknown University, a new anthology of Bolano's poetry, reads like a series of fragments from a diary of this epic artistic journey. It's a book filled with sorrows and joys and discoveries as Bolano the poet takes up themes that are repeated often in his novels. For him, writers are men and women engaged in a sacred search, with poets the purest seekers of all. It's a pursuit that's all the more noble, given that Bolano knows that the immortality writers seek is unattainable.