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I Burn Paris

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  187 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
"The translation ... appears in a moment when materialism and avarice are at their zenith, social unrest is spanning continents, and the disparity of wealth is at its largest point since, well, the original publication of I Burn Paris that saw Polish émigré author Bruno Jasieński escorted to the French-German boarder and warned not to return."
Lemon Hound

Bruno Jasienski’s
Paperback, 299 pages
Published October 2nd 2017 by Twisted Spoon Press (first published 1929)
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Dec 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Her name is Laure. And the place is Paris. Her name, which she dislikes because of its ubiquity in that city, was given to her by her parents precisely for that reason: so that she would fit in. I met her in Le Piano Vache, a bar on Rue Laplace. With a typical male predatory instinct, I waited until her friend had gone to the toilet before approaching her. When I introduced myself she laughed at l’englishman ivre. Her voice was like the tinkling of small bells; when I heard it I felt as though I ...more
John Christy
Jun 01, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
jasienski is lazy and smart. the book is driven by strong passions and prejudices. doesnt apologize for outright glorification of proletarians and, more strikingly, the villification of decadent and rotting liberals & bourgeois

he got banned from france for writing it
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very bleak, ironic and funny.
The whole thing works as this impressive machine for Jasienski's metaphors. If you can't come to any conclusion about the viability of Communism, if one can avoid feeling drowned as a proletariat within a Capitalist machine, what's obvious is this is a pretty incredibly crafted novel.
Since this was written in 1928 and only published in English in 2012 this is likely the case of a significant novel being given late-dues.
I Burn Paris has characters, but like Andrei Bely's Petersburg, the real protagonist is the city itself, that was one of the first things I thought as I read the first 30 or so pages, it reminded me quite a bit of Petersburg, the scale of it, the pace, the poem-like vibe. I simply loved this book. An ode to the proletariat? A rail against capitalism? Both.

"Back in the factory Pierre had heard long and monotonous stories about this new world, a world with neither rich nor oppressed, where the fac
Aug 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Powieść bardzo zaskakująca. Nie jest to może "wielkie" dzieło ale z pewnością jedna z niespodzianek polskiej literatury, która mimo upływu czasu nadal warta jest czytania. Niby powieść socjalistyczna, z tezą i znanymi motywami, ale jeszcze przed ustaleniem się socrealizmu. Są postacie uciemiężonego proletariatu, silnych robotników i ideowych komunistów, jest apoteoza pracy i krytyka zachodniej zgnilizny, ale styl, język i fabuła są dalekie od ortodoksji. Przede wszystkim ogromna pasja niszczenia ...more
Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
5 stars for audacity alone. And it is a fun book, a catastrophic vision of Western Europe crumbling, giving way for a new system (it was written between the two World Wars, so guess which). And you know, as bizarre as the book is, there are some touching moments among the plague and hubris. Mostly I wanted to see what was so bad that the French felt the need to kick Jasienski out of Europe.
Jayden gonzalez
May 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this book is really good i think.
My review

Please see my introductory post on I Burn Paris which has some good links, including the Afterword by Soren Gauger.

The story starts with Pierre, an assembly-line worker in an automobile manufacturer, fired from his job due to “France’s lousy economic condition”. Pierre, out of frustration at his inability to find a job and the infidelity of his girlfriend, poisons the water supply of Paris with a super strain of bubonic plague. Pierre sees pre-plague Paris as a debauched place, full of
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I Burn Paris was a great read, if confusing at times. Profoundly ambiguous in viewpoint, in my opinion. It was only later that I read about Jasiénski that things started to make sense: a Polish Futurist, a poet, a communist, and a later prisoner of Stalin's gulag. But (perhaps shockingly for a futurist) this book is possessed of a deep class hatred, mocking the liberals of Paris, while the proletariat and political underclass are nearly heroic. Of course I was a huge fan of this part in particul ...more
Jun 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely spectacular! Startlingly plausible, razor-sharp prose (even in translation); amid the shifting perspectives, utterly engrossing. Best novel I've read this year.
Mar 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
You can hear an in-depth discussion of Jasieński's 'I Burn Paris' on Sherds Podcast:
Apr 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Outside of Poland, Bruno Jasieński is a little known name, and I can imagine that inside of Poland he’s probably an obscure name, although he has a street named after him, and an annual “Brunonalia” literary festival is named after him, both in Klimontów. But when you read his biography, let alone his works, it is amazing that he is not more well known.

A Polish-Jew, he is considered one of the founders of the Polish futurist movement and moved to Paris in 1925, listing three reasons for leaving
When Jeanette told Pierre she needed some new slippers, Pierre was thrown into a state of crisis. They were not far from the factory where she worked, and not far from the factory where he worked, until lunch time that is when the foreman told him he was no longer needed. Pierre’s new found poverty quickly led to his side-lining in their group – as his lack of money quickly marked him as a being without social worth, social networks, social relations, without value.

From this one moment, with its
Feb 12, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
I'm not sure quite what to think of this, it came across as disjointed and too short that none of the characters bar P'an are fleshed out at all. The three parts of the novel (Part 1, P'an's history, and what happens to Paris) could almost be written by different people.

Part 1 felt far too short, just as it was getting started it was over. Not to mention what was there was so unnecessarily overloaded with description and imagery that it seemed more like a poem than a novel (understandable given
Kulturozpyt Prumerny
"There survive a few of his letters written from captivity directly to Stalin, begging for clemency. In his last letter of many pages, written in self defense, he lists the shocking tortures to which he was subjected (fingernails pulled out, teeth kicked in)"

It is an irony. Author wrote a book about socialism and USSR. Then he died because of stalinism in USSR. I have only one message to the leftist audience:

STALIN, LENIN, PUTIN, all of you, go fuck yourself... .
Daniel T
very cool book. last part is kinda weird. first part was awesome. middle was very sad
Anton Relin
Apr 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brash, unabashed prose. Written incredibly vividly, I recommend this to any fan of futurism, of vorticism, or literature in general. Among my favorite, if not my all time favorite.
Kobe Bryant
The first part was cool and I dont really know what happened in the other parts
Adrian Fulneczek
Ishaq Fahim
Mar 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
a frantic fever dream of a novel
Aug 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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Bruno Jasienski, born Wiktor Zysman, was a Polish poet and leader of the Polish futurist movement, executed during the Polish operation of the NKVD in the Soviet Union.
He was born to a Polish family of Zysmans with Jewish and German roots, but from his mother's side he was a descendant of nobility. His father, Jakub Zysman, was a local doctor and a social worker, member of the local intelligentsia
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