Impressions of Africa

Impressions of Africa

By Raymond Roussel

Translated by Rayner Heppenstall and Lindy Foord

ISBN: 9780714548586

256 pages

RRP: £7.99

The first of Roussel’s two major prose works, Impressions of Africa is not, as the title may suggest, a conventional travel account, but an adventure story put together in a highly individual fashion and with an unusual time sequence, whereby the reader is even made to choose whether to begin with the first or the tenth chapter.

A veritable literary melting pot, Roussel’s groundbreaking text makes ample use of wordplay and the surrealist techniques of automatic writing and private allusion.

Part of Calder Publications imprint


  • An imagination which joins the mathematician’s delirium to the poet’s logic – this, among other marvels, is what one discovers in the novels of Raymond Roussel.

    Raymond Queneau

Raymond Roussel

Raymond Roussel (1877–1933) was a French poet, novelist, playwright, musician, chess enthusiast, neurasthenic and drug addict. Through his novels, poems and plays he exerted a profound influence on certain groups within 20th-century French literature, including the Surrealists, Oulipo and the authors of the Nouveau Roman.