This volume brings together three short novels by Catalan literature’s great maverick and recluse, each depicting a brutal, abstract world where words are the only reality—shifting between the erudite, the archaic, and the vulgar. Carrer Marsala, which won prizes from the City of Barcelona and the Generalitat de Catalunya—neither of which Bauçà bothered to accept—is a relentless monologue delivered by a paranoid hypochondriac obsessed with dental hygiene, sex, and his own squalid rooms in Barcelona. In The Old Man, the narrator observes a strange building where a decrepit prisoner is ritually beaten by a policeman once a week. The Warden details the narrator’s own captivity, and his relationship with the woman who keeps him prisoner. In Martha Tennent’s haunting translation, reminiscent of a Mediterranean Beckett or Thomas Bernhard, Miquel Bauçà’s work is a pungent reminder of the ways the world fails its prophets and pariahs.
Translated by Martha Tennent
Publication: Catalan Literature Series
Number of pages: 224
List price: $22.95