Thoughts of Sorts

Thoughts of Sorts, one of Georges Perec’s final works, was published posthumously in France in 1985. With this translation, David Bellos, Perec’s preeminent translator, has completed the Godine list of Perec’s great works translated into English and has provided an introduction to this master of “systematic versatility.” Thoughts of Sorts is a compilation of musings and essays attempting to circumscribe, in Perec’s words, “my experience of the world not in terms of the reflections it casts in distant places, but at its actual point of breaking surface.” Perec investigates the ways by which we define our place in the world, reveling in listmaking, orientating, classifying. This book employs all of the modes of questioning explored by his previous books, and at the same time breaks new ground of its own, ending with a question mark in typical / atypical Perec fashion.

Praise for Thoughts of Sorts

Thoughts of Sorts is a very enjoyable collection, from the useful ‘Statement of Intent’ to its consideration of the physical act of reading and Perec’s ‘Thoughts of Sorts / Sorts of Thoughts’ . . . yet another must-read for any Perec-fan.
—M.A. Orthofer, The Complete Review


Georges Perec (March 7, 1936 in Paris – March 3, 1982 in Ivry-sur-Seine) was a French novelist, filmmaker, documentalist, and essayist. He was a member of the Oulipo group. His father died as a soldier early in the Second World War and his mother was killed in the Holocaust, and many of his works deal with absence, loss, and identity, often through word play.