The aura of a writer

‘[Raymond Roussel] said that after his first book he expected that the next morning there would be a kind of aura around his person and that everyone in the street would be able to see that he had written a book. This is the obscure desire harboured by everyone who writes. It is true that the first text one writes is neither written for others, nor because one is what one is: one writes to become other than what one is. One tries to modify one’s way of being through the act of writing.’

Michel Foucault (1987) ‘An interview with Michel Foucault by Charles Ruas’. In Death and the Labyrinth: The World of Raymond Roussel. Tr. C. Ruas. London: The Athlone Press, p.182.

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