What do Marcel Duchamp and Italo Calvino have in common? The Oulipo, or Ouvroir de litterature potentielle. Raymond Queneau and Francois Le Lionnais ... Show synopsis What do Marcel Duchamp and Italo Calvino have in common? The Oulipo, or Ouvroir de litterature potentielle. Raymond Queneau and Francois Le Lionnais founded their "Workshop for Potential Literature" in 1960 to find out how abstract restrictions could be combined with imaginative writing (as in Georges Perec's notorious novel written without the letter e.) Still formidably active, the Oulipo is now recognised as the most original, productive and provocative literary enterprise to appear since the last war. This Compendium is the first comprehensive survey of the group in any language and it includes, as well as biographical, bibliographical and theoretical information: a complete translation of Queneau's 100,000,000,000,000 Poems, the work that led to the Oulipo's creation; Jacques Roubaud's extensive account of Oulipian history and practice; full documentation of Oulipian writing techniques, with translated or original examples, many of them full-length works; analyses of important Oulipian works, such as Perec's Life A User's Manual, and Calvino's If on a Winter's Night a Traveller. Briefer sections are devoted to related groups, among them: The Oupeinpo (potential painting) and its many creative techniques, most of them illustrated; the Oulipopo (potential detective fiction) and its array of methods for inventing and solving crimes; the Oubapo (potential comic strips) and its new ways to combine drawing and text. The Oulipo Compendium abounds in material for writers, teachers and scholars; it also offers a cornucopia of entertainment for curious readers.