WEISSNER~Carl – Le Regard D’Autrui
Publisher: Cold Turkey Press, France
Carl Weissner, Le Regard D’Autrui
limited and numbered edition of 36
22 pages on 160 gr paper, cover 300 gr, staple bound and glued, 260 x 177 x 5 mm.
Jan Herman, who worked on this edition with Gerard Bellaart of Cold Turkey
When Carl Weissner died, unexpectedly, he was only 71. Le Regard d’Autrui, now published for the first time, posthumously, by Cold Turkey Press, was written in English. Why in English and why with a French title is unclear. What is clear, however, is that the tale shows him to have been a master storyteller as good as any of the celebrated writers who were beneficiaries of his masterly translations. Told in first person, Le Regard d’Autrui sounds as though it is autobiographical.
The casual voice is dryly funny and smart, the tone full of ironic asides, the
language rich with clever slang, and the references Ã¢â‚¬â€œ literary and wide-ranging Ã¢â‚¬â€œ always apt. It’s the way Carl spoke. Carl was an expert at making things up and bending facts to his purpose. So if you think for a minute that Le Regard d’Autrui is strictly autobiographical rather than a piece of fiction, you’d be wrong. Still, the blend he came up with this time has a confessional quality I’d not seen before in his writing, something touching and personal even when it’s down-and-dirty.
Regard turns out to be an elegiac memorial to an old lover from the narrator’s
youth. I can’t help feeling that Le Regard d’Autrui, although complete in itself as published, might have been part of a larger work Ã¢â‚¬â€ perhaps a bildungsroman Ã¢â‚¬â€œ that Carl had in mind.