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Literary Laboratory: Agustín Fernández Mallo & Isabel Waidner in Conversati...

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LG02, Professor Stuart Hall Building (PSH)

Goldsmiths, University of London

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SE14 6NW

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The Goldsmiths Writers' Centre in association with the New Statesman and Hotel presents

Literary Laboratory: Agustín Fernández Mallo & Isabel Waidner in Conversation

Agustín Fernández Mallo, Isabel Waidner and writer-translator Thomas Bunstead will read from their work ahead of a roundtable discussion on the place of experiment, nationality and cultural reference in contemporary literary fiction.

A landmark publication in contemporary Spanish literature, Fernández Mallo’s Nocilla Trilogy (Fitzcarraldo Editions) presents multiple narratives of people and place that reflect and refract a view of personal perspective and creativity in the digital age. In the third and final volume of this series, Nocilla Lab (published on January 16th), Fernández Mallo self-consciously investigates the terms of this trio of novels; a project hailed as “one of the most daring literary experiments of the early twenty-first century.”

Following Gaudy Bauble (Dostoyevsky Wannabe, 2017), Waidner’s new novel We Are Made of Diamond Stuff (Dostoyevsky Wannabe, 2019) is an innovative, queer and critically “British” work that takes issue with the idea of national belonging. Set on the Isle of Wight, the novel is a studied collision of literary aesthetics and contemporary working-class cultures and attitudes (scrutinizing B.S. Johnson and Reebok classics in tandem). Combining critiques of empire, nation and the autobiographical, Waidner explores the terms of queer migrant experience in the UK to challenge critical complacency and the politics of literary labour.

Thomas Bunstead’s novel Semblance was shortlisted for the 2018 Fitzcarraldo Novel Prize, and he has been at work translating Fernández Mallo since 2014.



Thomas Bunstead is a writer and translator based in East Sussex, England. He has translated some of the leading Spanish-language writers working today, including Eduardo Halfon and Enrique Vila-Matas, and his own writing has appeared in publications such as >kill author, The Paris Review Daily, and The Times Literary Supplement. He is an editor at the literary translation journal In Other Words.

Agustín Fernández Mallo was born in La Coruña in 1967, and is a qualified physicist. In 2000 he formulated a self-termed theory of ‘post-poetry’, which explores connections between art and science and has been the principal focus in several prize-winning collections of poetry since then. The Nocilla Trilogy, published between 2006 and 2009, brought about an important shift in contemporary Spanish writing and paved the way for the birth of a new generation of authors, known as the ‘Nocilla Generation’. His long essay Postpoesía, hacia un nuevo paradigmawas shortlisted for the Anagrama Essay Prize in 2009. In 2018 his long essay Teoría de la basura (cultura, apropriacionismo y complejidad) was published, and in the same year his latest novel, Trilogía de la guerra (forthcoming from Fitzcarraldo Editions), won the Biblioteca Breve Prize.

Isabel Waidner is a writer and critical theorist. Their books include We Are Made of Diamond Stuff (2019), Gaudy Bauble (2017) and Liberating the Canon: An Anthology of Innovative Literature (ed., 2018), published by Dostoyevsky Wannabe. Waidner's articles, essays and short fictions have appeared in journals including 3:AM, Configurations, Gorse, The Happy Hypocrite and The Quietus. They are the co-curator of the event series Queers Read This at the Institute for Contemporary Art (with Richard Porter) and lecture at the University of Roehampton, London.

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LG02, Professor Stuart Hall Building (PSH)

Goldsmiths, University of London

London

SE14 6NW

United Kingdom

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