William Seward Burroughs II (February 5, 1914(1914-02-05) – August 2, 1997; pronounced /ˈbʌroʊz/) was an American novelist, essayist, social critic, painter and spoken word performer. Much of Burroughs's work is semi-autobiographical, drawn from his experiences as an opiate addict, a condition that marked the last fifty years of his life. A primary member of the Beat Generation, he was an avant-garde author who affected popular culture as well as literature. In 1975, he was elected to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.
A compilation of his tape experiments from 1959 through 1978 was released on Industrial records in 1981.