She Who Lies Above by Beatriz Hausner

She Who Lies Above by Beatriz Hausner

Publication Date: November 7, 2023
109 pages
6 x 8 inches
ISBN 9781771668200

Trade Paperback
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In She Who Lies Above, Beatriz Hausner brings Hypatia of Alexandria, the fourth-century Byzantine mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher, to life. She does so through layered ventriloquism: publishing amorous correspondence from the feminist icon’s friend and former student, Synesius of Cyrene, and scribing Hypatia’s replies in turn.


These letters are “discovered” by Bettina Ungaro, a librarian and archivist by day and poet by night. She, in turn, collates the correspondence to build a vision of the couple’s relationship while writing a kind of postmodern critique of contemporary book and reading culture. These interjections both borrow from and juxtapose writing from ancient times and, in doing so, explore the evolution of modern knowledge keeping.

The result is a rigorous, hyper-layered collection of poems that are elegiac and erotic; steeped in appreciation for a life of books and the technical and transcendent brilliance their authors can exhibit.

Praise for She Who Lies Above

“Utterly unique, She Who Lies Above blends and transmutes erudition and invention, image and eros, allusion and alchemy to unveil marvels on every page; to read it is to be ensorcelled.” —Peter Dubé, author of The Headless Man

“Knowingly, with invention and grace, and as she conjures the boundless delights of body and mind, Beatriz Hausner tells us the story of the ill-fated scholar, Hypatia, and her student and lover, Synesius. An enchantment.” —Rikki Ducornet, author of The Plotinus

Press Coverage

Most Anticipated: Our 2023 Fall Poetry Preview —49th Shelf

Poet Questionnaire: Beatriz Hausner answering Stan Rogal —periodicity

Surrealism Here and Now —49th Shelf

Writer’s Block: Beatriz Hausner —All Lit Up

A Reading List for Women’s History Month 2024 —CLMP

Bestseller List —Edmonton’s Bestselling Books

About the Author

Beatriz Hausner was born in Chile and immigrated to Canada with her family when she was a teenager. She has published many poetry books, including The Wardrobe Mistress (2004), Sew Him Up (2010), Enter the Raccoon (2012), and Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart (2020). Her prose and poetry have been published in many chapbooks and included in several anthologies, and her books have been published internationally and translated into several languages, including her native Spanish, French, Dutch, and Greek. She is an active participant in the international surrealist movement, and a respected historian and translator of Latin American surrealism. Hausner, who is trilingual, served three terms as President of the Literary Translators’ Association of Canada and was Chair of the Public Lending Right Commission. She was also a founding publisher of Quattro Books. Hausner lives in Toronto where she publishes The Philosophical Egg.