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Après the Avant Garde

Fredric Jameson, 12 December 1996

Histoire de ‘Tel Quel’, 1960-82 
by Philippe Forest.
Seuil, 656 pp., frs 180, October 1995, 2 02 017346 8
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The Time of Theory: A History of ‘Tel Quel’ (1960-83) 
by Patrick ffrench.
Oxford, 318 pp., £37.50, December 1995, 0 19 815897 1
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The Making of an Avant Garde: ‘Tel Quel’ 
by Niilo Kauppi.
Mouton de Gruyter, 516 pp., August 1994, 3 11 013952 9
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... pioneered by Pierre Bourdieu – and exemplified here in a particularly satisfying way by Niilo Kauppi’s book. Like the cycles of the great Mafiosi or the history of the Comintern, the chanson de geste of the various avant gardes has a relatively immutable pattern: the first friendships and then the founding of something; the deliberate ...

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