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July, 2016

The Watchlist: July 2016

Every month, from the reviews desk to you, Words without Borders shares a handful of new titles they are excited about and think you should be excited about, too. This month’s list was compiled by Stephanie Hubble, a student at Michigan Technological University, with...

The City and the Writer: In Valletta, Malta with Nadia Mifsud

Image: Nadia Mifsud. If each city is like a game of chess, the day when I have learned the rules, I shall finally possess my empire, even if I shall never succeed in knowing all the cities it contains. —Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities Can you describe the mood...

The Hungry Years in Catalonia: An Interview with Peter Bush about “Black Bread”

Black Bread, one of the major novels of Catalan literature, makes its appearance in English in the Biblioasis International Translation Series this month, in a translation by Peter Bush. Series editor Stephen Henighan asked Bush about the narrative world of the novel’s author, Emili...

The Translator Relay: Mihaela Moscaliuc

Image: Mihaela Moscaliuc. WWB’s Translator Relay features an interview with a different translator each month. This month’s translator will choose the next interviewee, adding a different, sixth question. For July’s installment, Sholeh Wolpé passed the...

WWB Weekend: Comings and Goings, Brexit and Turke(ntr)y

Image: European Union flags on Castle Street, Hull, Great Britain. Creative Commons. With the UK still reeling at the prospect of leaving the European Union, we’re looking back to a time when another country seemed on the brink of joining. The title of our December 2005...

Hatred, Silence, Violence, and Kafkaesque Institutions: An Interview with Dragoslava Barzut

Image: Dragoslava Barzut. Photograph by Vincent Urbani. In December 2015, I read in Autonomija that Dragoslava Barzut, an author I have been translating, and three other women had been attacked in a Belgrade bar a few months earlier. She was hit in the head and knocked to the ground;...

The City and the Writer: In Yogyakarta, Indonesia with Tia Setiadi

Image: Tia Setiadi. If each city is like a game of chess, the day when I have learned the rules, I shall finally possess my empire, even if I shall never succeed in knowing all the cities it contains. —Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities Can you describe the mood of Yogyakarta as you...

When in Hell, Embrace the Devil: On Recreating “Grande Sertão: Veredas” in English

Image: Passages of Grande Sertão: Veredas hanging in the Museum of the Portuguese Language in São Paulo. (Wikimedia Commons.) Alison Entrekin’s translation of an excerpt from Grande Sertão: Veredas appears in the July 2016 issue of Words without...

June, 2016

The City and The Writer: In El Salvador with Roxana Méndez

Image: Roxana Méndez. If each city is like a game of chess, the day when I have learned the rules, I shall finally possess my empire, even if I shall never succeed in knowing all the cities it contains. —Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities Can you describe the mood of El...

From the Translator: Schernikau’s Quiet Radicalism

Image: From the cover of Ronald M. Schernikau’s Kleinstadtnovelle (Small-town Novella). Lucy Renner Jones’s translation of Ronald M. Schernikau’s “Small-town Novella”​ appears in the June 2016 issue of Words without Borders: “The Queer...

In Memoriam: Gregory Rabassa, 1922–2016

Image: Earl Fitz with Gregory Rabassa. Photo courtesy of Ezra E. Fitz. The great translator Gregory Rabassa died June 13 at ninety-four. You can read an excerpt from his memoir, If This Be Treason, here. In the meantime, some translators from Spanish share their thoughts...

WWB Weekend: Soccer Queens of Colombia

In honor of the Copa America final this weekend and the pride celebrations this month, we turn to Alberto Salcedo Ramos’s rollicking “Queens Football,” from our Queer issue of June 2014. The modifier refers to neither borough nor monarch, but to the...

Dispatches from the Festival degli Scrittori, Florence, Italy

Image: Dany Laferrière (center) and Alba Donati (right) at the 2016 Festival degli Scrittori at Palazzo Strozzi. On June 6-8, writers, translators, and publishers from around the world gathered in Florence for the tenth annual Festival degli Scrittori and Gregor von Rezzori...

An Interview with Dany Laferrière

Image: Dany Laferrière during the 2016 Festival degli Scrittori. Photo by Jessie Chaffee. Dany Laferrière’s novel The World is Moving Around Me was a finalist for the 2016 Gregor von Rezzori Prize. Born in Port-au-Prince in 1953, Dany Laferrière worked as a...

An Interview with Mircea Cărtărescu

Image: Mircea Cărtărescu. Photo by Jessie Chaffee. Romanian poet, fiction writer, and journalist Mircea Cărtărescu was awarded the 2016 Premio Gregor von Rezzori for his trilogy Blinding. Born in Bucharest in 1956, he is one of Romania’s premier...

Translating the Classics: An Interview with Lydia Davis

Image: Lydia Davis at the University of Georgia Chapel (with George Cooke’s 1847 painting, "Interior of St. Peter's"), Wikimedia Commons. In the spring of 2016, as co-teachers of the course Translating the Classics, we and our eight students engaged in an electronic...

Refugee Stories: Idomeni, Greece

Image: Ahmad at the refugee camp in Idomeni, Greece, photographed by Martin Trabalik.  In 2015, over 800,000 individuals fleeing war-torn lands in the Middle East made the hazardous journey from Turkey to Greece in overcrowded, ill-equipped boats, hoping eventually to find...

Remembering Gregory Rabassa

Image: Gregory Rabassa. Photograph taken by his daughter Clara Rabassa. Daniel Shapiro, a Distinguished Lecturer at The City College of New York, CUNY, and editor of Review: Literature and Arts of the Americas, remembers renowned translator Gregory Rabassa, who passed away on June 13,...

WWB Weekend: Muslim and Queer

In our sorrow and disbelief over the attack in Orlando, we turn to our archives for some insight into the lives of queer Muslims in other parts of the world. Two stories—one from Jordan, one from Iran—describe ruses based on queer identity, and social attitudes toward it,...

Help WWB Inspire Global Readers

June 6–17, Words Without Borders is raising support for its new online education program, WWB Campus, with a crowdfunding campaign to #InspireGlobalReaders. Find out more about WWB Campus and how you can help on our Generosity page. Since 2014, WWB Campus has brought...

Writing Outside the Mainstream: An Interview with Jeon Sam-hye

Image: Anton Hur and Jeon Sam-hye at Seoul Pride, 2016. Anton Hur’s translaton of Jeon Sam-hye’s story “Genesis” appears in the June 2016 issue of Words without Borders: “The Queer Issue VII.” Anton Hur (AH): How did you come to write...

The City and the Writer: In El Salvador with Jorge Galán

Image: Jorge Galán If each city is like a game of chess, the day when I have learned the rules, I shall finally possess my empire, even if I shall never succeed in knowing all the cities it contains.                      ...

The Watchlist: June 2016

Every month, from the reviews desk to you, Words without Borders reviews editor M. Bartley Seigel shares a handful of forthcoming titles he’s excited about and thinks you should be excited about, too. From One World Publications, A Very Special Year by Thomas Montasser, translated...

Sympathy for the Underdog: An Interview with Peter Zilahy

Image: Peter Zilahy, photographed by Eftihia Stefanidi. Peter Zilahy’s The Last Window-Giraffe is a genre-defying book originally written in Hungarian; it has been translated into twenty-two languages and is often cited as one of the inspirations for the Orange Revolution in...

WWB Weekend: Boxing Days

This weekend, in memory of Muhammad Ali and with a nod to next month’s events in Rio, we’re scheduling a rematch with Eyad Barghuthy’s “A Knockout Punch,” from our May 2015 issue of new Palestinian writing. Barghuthy tells the tale of another black Muslim...

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