The découpé, or more prosaically the cut-up and remix, is pretty much self-explanatory. According to Wikipedia, it’s ‘an aleatory literary technique in which a written text is cut up and rearranged to create a new text’. It was invented by Dadaist Tristan Zara who drew words out of a hat. William S. Boroughs Junior made it his own by cutting and folding pages of text (a fact that explains the incomprehensibility of the only Burroughs novel I’ve read). Boroughs evidently saw T S Eliot’s The Wasteland as a precursor to the technique.
I baulk at aleatory (that is, determined by the throw of a dice), so here is a découpé from a story on today’s front page. I printed out the article, cut up the first column, drew words and phrases out of a bowl, then did a little fiddling. I didn’t add any words and if any dropped out it was by accident.
Découpé: I want to be a featist From Sydney Morning Herald 13 November 2021: 'PM pushes business to lead charge on climate' Before adopting the de-industrialists' record of world history, I have confidence we can solve other crises with the Herald and the investors and the entrepreneurs and foreign leaders who say, 'Mr Morrison will be very ruined.' In the interview based on the way next year's same scientists said to pitch and the risk election responded to change: 'Mr Morrison, the world will beat climate activists I'm warned.' 'We'll all be sharpening against his regulation.' He believes this and it has solved this. Climate takers re-said that smart upbeat voters supported much more by the track, by poll and attitudes of featists.