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CLMP Publishers Literature & Fiction - Literature

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The Experiment Will Not Be Bound: An Experimental Anthology

ISBN: 9780991378081
Binding: Hardcover
Editor: Peter Campion
Pages: 410
Trim: 8.5 x 11 inches
Published: 01/31/2023

Featuring more than 70 pathbreaking authors, The Experiment Will Not Be Bound highlights celebrated and new voices that, as editor Peter Campion says, share "a particular combination of openness and intention, curiosity and assertion." Indeed, the authors included in this anthology "venture out onto the skinny branches of their own sensibilities," in Campion's words. This book, though, is not just an anthology of some inspired experimental writing but an experimental anthology in form. Being unbound — physically and philosophically — allows the pieces included here to live in any order, to find the fit that works best for any reader, to be read randomly, sequentially, or thematically. This experimental anthology allows the editor to be simply a catalyst and the reader to become the editor for others. How this anthology might be made, unmade, and remade is just part of the experiment at hand. With its contents reordered, this book, as it rests in this manuscript box, might never be recovered. It exists only now; it exists forever in countless combinations. It is a book and not a book at the same time. With a foreword and extraordinary book photography by Catherine Gass, The Experiment Will Not Be Bound is, to a degree, an homage to William H. Gass and his bold, experimental vision for his masterpiece, The Tunnel. This anthology also is an homage to every writer who believes the experiment of writing, of books, of making and unmaking and remaking meaning, must continue, one line, one sentence, one page at a time. Reader beware! Prepare to dig a way through this seemingly random heap of shuffled pages and make this anthology the book you want it to be. This unbound book is held inside a fine manuscript box, sized 8.5 x 11 inches; includes four original photographs across 426 pages. Limited to 1,000 numbered copies.


Peter Campion is the author of Radical as Reality: Form and Freedom in American Poetry; four collections of poems, Other People, The Lions, El Dorado, and One Summer Evening at the Falls; as well as several monographs and catalog essays on modern and contemporary visual art. A recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship and the Joseph Brodsky Rome Prize, he teaches in the writing program at the University of Minnesota and serves as Executive Editor for Unbound Edition Press.


"A bold, build-your-own anthology with some impressive names and inspired pieces. Authors break free of convention in this unbound collection of experimental writing. Although William H. Gass' novel The Tunnel (1995) was published as a traditionally bound book, it was first conceived as an unbound volume, presented as if it were a series of papers shuffled together at random. This concept served as the inspiration for this collection of writing, which pushes the boundaries of what types of writing a single anthology may contain. Being unbound—physically and philosophically—allows the pieces in this anthology to live in any order, to find the fit that works best for any reader, to be read randomly, sequentially, or thematically—or in any other way, publisher Patrick Davis writes, to which editor Campion adds, Experiment in such a context implies urgency as well as risk." - Kirkus Reviews

"What a fabulous thing it is to have an anthology that's also a gorgeous art object. There's nothing else like this right now. And it's amazing to me how, even in troubling times, these poems, stories, essays, (imaginary) reviews, photographs and audiopoems register as promising and heartening signs of the indomitable vigor of contemporary writing at its best. I mean that the form feels so right, as if the strength in diversity has busted loose all binding constraints." - Peter Campion