D-FACT\OR is a fictionalized autobiography of a deeply disturbed woman who believes life on the street is the path to freedom.
The book centers on the fictional Liz Fitzgibbon and her lover Sarah. In an Introduction, the author implies that Fitzgibbon is an important historical figure, noting that her work “has every right to be studied as the premier expression of the account of political dissent.”
The Introduction is filled with convoluted discussions of Fitzgibbon’s political ideals, with hard-to-decipher sentences, such as: “[A]lthough Fitzgibbon is marketing a cryptic faction of global freedom by means of a story as if fated for it and with a passion which others dedicated to the happiness of their ill-gotten wealth…:
The book then offers Fitzgibbons’ first-person work: D-FACT\OR. Like the Introduction, this is a surreal chaos of ideas. But in broad outline, we understand that Fitzgibbon was an important ad executive who became disillusioned with capitalism and felt a lure to live homeless. “Come, go, walk, its only one direction to me,” she writes. “Rest for our luncheon of putrid trash…My way is the street.”
Fitzgibbon also lives off and on in a motorhome and has a volatile relationship with Sarah and another woman, Caleb. In her world, violence and pain are celebrated: “I want my life broken and bent,” she writes at one point.
Such ideas are frequently repeated throughout as the story unspools with little care for chronology. Contradictory statements abound, as do shifting pronouns, e.g., “he” and “she” for the same person. Sentences continually puzzle: “Like an animal, I travel the near spaces, and in my dreams, the flow of itinerant consumption is my only constant emotion.”
As the story lurches toward a violent climax, one could argue that confusion is the point: that the life described here is so twisted that imposing logic on it would be misleading. Indeed, there may be many meanings hidden in this rambling narrative. Unfortunately, only the most determined readers will want to navigate through the confusion to sort it all out.
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