The first section of this polemic essay offers an anecdotal introduction to the previously largely unknown history of self-publishing – a practice carried out by highly acclaimed authors of the Western literary canon, including Laurence Sterne and Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, Marcel Proust and Virginia Woolf, Kathy Acker and Derek Walcott. The second section takes its charge from the epigraph “Institutions cannot prevent what they cannot imagine” and looks forward to the political praxis of the 21st century’s digital future.
The present edition is a German translation and expansion of the English original, written by Craig Dworkin, Simon Morris und Nick Thurston, which was printed and distributed by the independent publishers ‘information as material’ in 2012. With the addition of examples from German literary history, Annette Gilbert positions this project as a micro-political phenomenon and expands upon its critical concept. She thus continues the work of Carlos Soto, who already added examples from Chilean history to his Spanish translation of the essay. French and Italian editions are in preparation, so that the book will continue to grow exponentially as a collective writing process from edition to edition.