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The computer poetry of J. M. Coetzee’s early programming career

By Rebecca Roach

Writer J. M. Coetzee’s early poetry is almost undecipherable. That’s because it was written in computer code.

Coetzee’s global reputation rests on his literary output, for which he received a Nobel Prize in 2003. Before he embarked on a career as a scholar and writer, the South African–born writer was a computer programmer in the early years of the industry’s development (1962–1965). I believe that this experience, while short, was vital for the development of Coetzee’s writerly project. While visiting the Ransom Center on a research fellowship, I examined Coetzee’s papers, which offer tantalizing clues about his neglected “other career.” Read more

“Global Gabo:” Q&A with Naomi Lindstrom

By Naomi Lindstrom

Naomi Lindstrom is the Gale Family Foundation Professor in Jewish Arts and Culture, a Professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at The University of Texas at Austin, and Associate Director of the Schusterman Center for Jewish Studies. Lindstrom is also a graduate faculty member in Comparative Literature and manages the website for the Latin American Jewish Association. Read more