Z213: EXIT is the first installment of the Poena Damni trilogy: a camp, a train, soldiers, a Bible with notes inside, encroaching darkness, the struggle to remember, the struggle of hiding, physical pain. As if waking up in a nightmare an escapee recounts his fleeting experiences in a series of fragmented diary entries in a hide-and-seek game with Death or even God. Written in a unique prose style, at times bordering on poetry and conveying a "pilgrimage of the soul" through a series of increasingly haunting pieces, Z213: EXIT creates the feeling that reader and narrator are led together through an eschatological experience. Horror is created by the scantiest vocabulary craftily combined to form a broken, unstructured syntax, seemingly tight, but leaving enough loopholes through which the reader's subconscious fears can pop in and out. Although evidently post-modernist, this is a book that does not undermine or shrink the traditional Grand Narrative themes; on the contrary, it thrives on them.
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Dimitris Lyacos is a one of the leading contemporary Greek poets and playwrights. His highly acclaimed trilogy Poena Damni (Z213: EXIT, Nyctivoe, The First Death), written over the course of eighteen years, has been translated into English, Spanish, Italian and German and has been performed across Europe as well as the USA. A wide range of interdisciplinary projects including drama, contemporary dance, video and sculpture installations as well as opera and contemporary music have been based on his trilogy. The work has also become the attention of academic research, among others by the universities of Miami, Amsterdam, Trieste and Oxford. Excerpts have been published by numerous literary periodicals, principally English-speaking, throughout the world. Lyacos' work both straddles and crosses perceived boundaries of literary form - from the journal-like prose in Z213: EXIT, to the elliptical monologues of the distinctly dramatic Nyctivoe, to the pared down poetic idiom in The First Death. Z213: EXIT, translated in English by Shorsha Sullivan, appeared recently in the UK by Shoestring Press. For more information visit the author's site: lyacos.net.About the Author:
Dimitris Lyacos is a leading figure in contemporary avant-garde writing. His trilogy Poena Damni (Z213: EXIT, With The People From The Bridge, The First Death), has been translated into six major languages and is widely performed across Europe and the USA. The work in its current form developed gradually over the course of twenty years with subsequent editions and excerpts appearing in journals around the world, as well as in dialogue with the diverse range of sister projects it has inspired - drama, contemporary dance, video and sculpture installations, opera and contemporary music. Classified as postmodern and cross-genre, the trilogy relies, however, on a well-defined structure while exploring classical themes: the scapegoat, the return of the dead, physical suffering and mental illness. A journey to a mystifying, unfamiliar world straddles and crosses perceived boundaries of literary form. The outcome is an alternative, allegorical universe, the forging of a new myth that reaches beyond postmodern dystopia.
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