The Olympia Reader  

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"Two novels on his list are classics, books whose genius he recognized and with which his own name will remain proudly linked: Lolita and The Ginger Man." --"Night Words: High Pornography and Human Privacy" (1965), George Steiner


"Writing d.b.'s was generally considered a useful professional exercise, as well as a necessary participation in the common fight against the Square World — an act of duty. What the Square World exactly was, nobody could have explained with any precision: but the notion was very strong, indeed; and it was not the usual routine of a new generation picking a quarrel with the old, it was a much stronger and deeper protest; not a protest against war or hunger, or against the bomb, but beyond that, a protest against the mental weakness, the poverty of spirit, and the general lack of genius and generosity of a rich and sclerotic society" --Maurice Girodias, The Olympia Reader (Grove Press, New York, 1965).


"My true quarrel with the Olympia Reader and the genre it embodies is not that so much of the stuff should be boring and abjectly written. It is that these books leave a man less free, less himself, than they found him; that they leave language poorer, less endowed with a capacity for fresh discrimination and excitement. It is not a new freedom that they bring, but a new servitude. In the name of human privacy, enough!" --"Night Words: High Pornography and Human Privacy" (1965), George Steiner

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Olympia Reader (Selections from the Traveller's Companion Series) (1965) is a Grove Press anthology containing material from some of Olympia Press's most popular works, including material by Burroughs, Miller, Trocchi and others. It is known for being reviewed by George Steiner as "Night Words".

Another well-known collection was The Best of Olympia, first published by the Olympia Press in 1963 and reprinted by New English Library in 1966.

ToC

The world of sex / Henry Miller -- I hear voices / Paul Ableman -- The adventures of Father Silas / Beauregard de Farniente -- Roman orgy / Marcus van Heller -- Stradella / James Sherwood -- The ginger man / J.P. Donleavy -- The black book / Lawrence Durrell -- The pleasure thieves / Harriet Daimler & Henry Crannach -- The young and evil / Charles Henri Ford & Parker Tyler -- Watt / Samuel Beckett -- Plexus / Henry Miller -- Fanny Hill / John Cleland -- Story of O / Pauline Réage ; translated by Sabine Destré -- Kama houri / Ataullah Mardaan -- The thief's journal / Jean Genet ; translated by Bernard Frechtman -- My life and loves / Frank Harris -- Candy / Maxwell Kenton -- The enormous bed / Henry Jones -- The gaudy image / William Talsman -- Justine / Marquis de Sade ; translated by Richard Seaver and Austryn Wainhouse -- Naked lunch / William S. Burroughs -- Young Adam / Frances Lengel -- Teleny / Anonymous -- Fuzz against junk / Akbar del Piombo -- Steiner's tour / Philip O'Connor -- Under the hill / Aubrey Beardsley & John Glassco -- The white paper / Anonymous -- A sad, ungraceful history of Lolita / Maurice Girodias -- Quiet days in Clichy / Henry Miller -- Sin for breakfast / Hamilton Drake -- The ticket that exploded / William S. Burroughs -- Houses of joy / Wu Wu Meng -- Pinktoes / Chester Himes -- The soft machine / Williams Burroughs -- Sexus / Henry Miller -- Zazie / Raymond Queneau ; translated by Akbar del Piombo and Eric Kahane -- Madame Edwarda / Georges Bataille ; translated by Austryn Wainhouse -- Our lady of the flowers / Jean Genet ; translated by Bernard Frechtman -- The woman thing / Harriet Daimler -- The American express / Gregory Corso -- The black diaries of Roger Casement / Maurice Girodias & Peter Singleton-Gates.



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Olympia Reader" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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