Highcastle: A Remembrance

( Polish - Wysoki Zamek - 1966 )

autobiography of Stanislaw Lem

translated by Michael Kandel

Published: Harcourt Brace - hardback - 1995
ISBN: 0151402183 / 9780151402182

Harvest - paperback - 1996
0156004720 / 9780156004725

Highcastle is an account, intentionally somewhat fragmentary, of Lem's childhood in the 1920s and 1930s in the city of Lvov (then in Poland, now in Ukraine).
Stanislaw Lem, it appears, was a slightly odd kid, smart but not a star student, shy and pear-shaped but not particularly ostracized, given to solitary pursuits never confessed to his friends at school. These included collecting broken pieces of machinery and constructing homemade mechanisms both functional and nonfunctional, but the most remarkable was a recreation performed only during class, under cover of a textbook: the creation of elaborate documents of authorization for imaginary activities to be performed by nonexistent people.


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