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Easily recognizable for his Romanian accent and his wry take on everything from hypertext to the Pope, NPR's Andrei Codrescu is now on tour to promote his latest output, Thus Spake the Corpse: An Exquisite Corpse Reader, which pulls from 10 years of the literary magazine's output. Named after a Dadaist game, the bold, irreverent and sometimes punishingly clever Exquisite Corpse has made the leap to cyberspace (www.corpse.org), and no longer publishes on paper. The online edition features things like a "Corpse Mall," selling books and a Corpse mousepad for serious necrophiliacs, and a "Cyber Bag," in which select submitted works are neither fully accepted nor rejected--instead the Corpse blithely hacks them up and throws them all in together. Much like his magazine, Codrescu always seems a step ahead of his readers: He has published books of poetry, novels, a memoir and two collections of commentaries, in addition to working as an editor, translator and teacher. The author appears at 7 p.m at Quail Ridge (828-1588) on Jan. 17, and 7 p.m. at The Regulator (286-2700) on Jan. 18. And for a special treat, catch a panel discussion called "Literary Currency: Do Writers Matter or Do They Mutter?" between Codrescu and local giants Ariel Dorfman and Hal Crowther at the Bryan Center at Duke, on Jan. 18 at 4 p.m.

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