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My Year 2000: Leaving Something Behind

Douglas Messerli

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Douglas Messerli
My Year 2000: Leaving Something Behind
Series No.: 255
ISBN: 978-1-55713-443-1, Pages: 640
American Literature, Memoir

Buy the My Year series (14 books)


Like the volumes from 2001 and 2002, My Year 2000 was composed somewhat "after the fact," and, accordingly, represents essays written over a fairly broad period of time which, stitched together, seemed to represent Messerli's slightly nostalgic subtitle, "Leaving Something Behind":

I am, after all, a product of the 20th century, despite the fact that I hope to continue fairly far into the 21st. Many of the pieces in this cultural memoir, thus, represent events of the past century: readings, films, travels (to both Brazil and the Soviet Union), and theoretical works and interviews which I wrote as a younger man. A long piece selects great moments of dance in 20th-century American film musicals. Essays on the films of Renoir, Tarkovsky, and Bresson, as well as on American westerns and the works of Samuel Beckett, all look backward to the century through which we had just passed.

Particularly within these works there is a strong sense of the century just finished, and a recognition of its horrific wars and terrifying ideologies. Indeed, Messerli argues, his after-the-fact discussion of films, theater performances, and other fictions such as the brilliant The Melancholy of Resistance by László Krasznahorkai (the translation was published in 2000, but Messerli read and wrote about it the following year) strongly revealed the sense of the ambiguous transition into the millennium. If this 2000 volume is, thus, not precisely a "natural" product of experiences and cultural events of the year, it clearly embraces many works the author read and saw during the millennium year. While we might still characterize it, as Messerli did the 2001 and 2002 volumes, as a fictional representation of the year -- although using only truthful reactions and perceptions -- it is also, he posits, a fairly accurate one.

Author of several collections of poetry and a fiction, Letters from Hanusse, Messerli also writes drama (under the pseudonym of Kier Peters). Editor of Sun & Moon Press, and now Green Integer, he was named Officier de l'ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government and was awarded The American Book Award and ALLTA Award for his publishing.

Also by Douglas Messerli:
After [Sun & Moon], $9.95
Bow Down, $9.95
Dark, $9.95
Dinner on the Lawn [Sun & Moon], $14.95
First Words, $9.95
Maxims from My Mother's Milk / Hymns to Him: A Dialogue [Sun & Moon], Out of Stock
Maxims from My Mother's Milk / Hymns to Him: A Dialogue (hardcover) [Sun & Moon], $19.95
My Year 2001: Keeping History a Secret, $17.95
My Year 2002: Love, Death, and Transfiguration, $9.95
My Year 2003: Voice Without a Voice, $9.95
My Year 2004: Under Our Skin, $9.95
My Year 2005: Terrifying Times, $9.95
My Year 2006: Serving, $9.95
My Year 2007: To the Dogs, $9.95
My Year 2008: In the Gap, $9.95
My Year 2009: Facing the Heat, $9.95
My Year 2010: Shadows, $9.95
My Year 2011: No One's Home , $9.95
My Year 2012: Centers Collapse, $17.95
My Year 2013: Murderers and Angels, $17.95
On Marriage: The Imagination of Being, $9.95
Reading Films: My International Cinema, Digital Only
River to Rivet: A Manifesto [Sun & Moon], $14.95
Silence All Round Marked: An Historical Play in Hysteria Writ [Sun & Moon], $9.95
Some Distance, Out of Stock
Stay, $9.95
The Walls Come True: An Opera for Spoken Voices (The Structure of Destruction, Part II) [Sun & Moon], $14.95

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