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August, 2012

Support the Publication of Geoff Wisner’s \\\“African Lives\\\”

Words without Borders is pleased to announce that writer, editor, and WWB contributor Geoff Wisner's second book, African Lives: An Anthology of Memoirs and Autobiographies, will be appearing next spring from Lynne Rienner Publishers.   The book will include...

July, 2012

The City and the Writer: In Marfa with David McDannald

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,...

From the Archives: Ghosts on the Bridge

As a transition between the two parts of our double issue of Japanese writing, you might want to revisit Michael Emmerich’s essay "Beyond Between: Translations, Ghosts, Metaphors," from our May 2009 issue. Michael details the multitude of possible Japanese renderings for the word...

The Week in Translation

GO what: June Fourth Elegies: A Reading and Discussion with Jeffrey Yang and Larry Siems when: Thursday, August 2, 6:30-8pm where: Museum of Chinese in America RSVP to [email protected] website:...

The Week in Translation

READ Awards and Honors Congratulations to the 2012 PEN Translation Fund Grant recipients: translator and WWB contributor Musharraf Ali Farooqi, Bernard Adams, Brent Edwards, Alexander Booth, Bonnie Huie, Hillary Gulley, Joshua Daniel Edwin, Deborah Garfinkle, Jacquelyn Pope,...

Forgotten Ways of Speaking: An Interview with Marti Gironell

Marti Gironell received his degree in journalism from the University of Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona and in English Philology from the University of Barcelona. He currently works at TV3, the main television channel in Catalonia. He started working in radio at a very young age and worked for...

The Decline and Fall of a Translator’s Brain

Just when you think you’ve figured out what is going on in the Toh Enjoe story “The History of the Decline and Fall of the Galactic Empire,” you trip on another oblique reference to some bit of the outside world. It’s a story that bears up to—and in fact,...

We Have to Love Brazil: A FLIP Diary

Day One: Wednesday, July 4 Precisamos adorar o Brasil! We have to love Brazil! Anticipation is running high as FLIP (the Festa Literária Internacional de Paraty, or International Literary Festival of Paraty) kicks off its tenth year this evening. Set in a picturesque colonial...

Understanding is Not the Most Important Thing: Shishkin, Schwartz, and Post in Conversation

At the end of Book Expo America events on June 7, readers gathered at McNally Jackson Books for a Bridge Series discussion with Russian author Mikhail Shishkin, his translator Marian Schwartz, and editor Chad Post about Maidenhair (being released in October by Open Letter), a...

The City and the Writer: In Santiago de Chile with Idra Novey

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....

On \“Fish Variations\”

Fish Variations has a very particular phonetic structure that throws up special challenges for the translator. Here are a few comments on these challenges and how I addressed them. Both original poem and translation have seven verses. The first four verses and the final verse are...

June, 2012

Pride in Padua

Before you head out to your local pride parade, stop by Padua's, courtesy of Matteo Bianchi's "Maternal Pride." Bianchi's droll panorama captures both the teeming crowd and the individual stories within. Kylie Minogue fanatic Marco, still dizzy from having shared his water...

How \“To Algeria, with Love\” became \“La Repubblica di Wally\”

Einaudi bought the Italian rights to my novel before it had an English language publisher, editor, or even a title. Work on the translation began last summer, around the time the book was published in the UK by Virago as To Algeria, with Love. As luck would have it, my husband and I were...

Two Takes on May-December

In Cristina Peri Rossi's "Ne me quitte pas," a fortysomething psychiatrist finds a patient's romantic anguish reflects his own insecurity about his teenaged lover. As the patient describes the pain of leaving his wife, the psychiatrist broods: how can this gorgeous, indefatigable...

Magdy El Shafee Publishes “Metro” in English

It's Metro Day at WWB. We're celebrating the publication of Magdy El Shafee's graphic novel, available today from Metropolitan Books in Chip Rossetti's translation. Readers will recall that WWB published an extract in February 2008, and that the book was seized on...

May, 2012

The City and the Writer: In San Francisco with Matthew Zapruder

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 San Francisco as you feel/see...

Can Literature Bear Witness?

As part of the PEN World Voices Festival, Herta Müller spent an afternoon at NYU's Deutsches Haus on May 3 to discuss whether it's possible for literature to bear witness. When I arrived at the venue, the main floor was packed, which I expected for a Nobel Prize winner. I...

To Fly to the Himalayas

(This post is based on Yuyutsu Sharma's 2010 visit to Cordoba where he was invited as a guest poet at the Cosmopoetica Poetry Festival.)   My life I can tell you in two words-- a patio and a small piece of sky where a lost cloud and some bird fleeing from its...

The Quality of the Fabric: An Interview with Bernardo Atxaga

Phillipe Starck´s forty-three-thousand-square-foot cultural center, the Alhóndiga, that was opened in 2010 was the setting for the Gutun Zuria literary conference that brought writers from the U.S., Spain and elsewhere to Bilbao in mid-April. Residents of the Basque city...

April, 2012

Literary Journeys through Catalonia: Searching for Mercè Rodoreda’s Barcelona

With Mercè Rodoreda's novel La Placa del Diamant  (translated as The Time of the Doves) in hand,  we took a lulling hour-and-a-half train ride from Girona to the sprawling, modernist city of Barcelona. The distance between Girona, the capital of the rural province of...

Listening Under the Kitchen Table: An Interview with Kirmen Uribe

Kirmen Uribe is a Basque writer and poet. In 2008, his novel, Bilbao-New York-Bilbao was published in Basque. (It has subsequently been translated into more than ten languages and was awarded the Premio Nacional de Literatura (Narrativa) in Spain. Uribe has also published...

The City and the Writer: In London with Hisham Matar

Special City Series / London   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....

Musical Beds, Catalan Style

If you've finished the issue and are still in the mood, check out Empar Moliner's rollicking "Invention of the Aspirin" in our October 2007 Catalan issue. A bored wife finds she has the ability to slip into other women's identities—and their bedrooms. Shapeshifting from...

Day Three at the London Book Fair

The highlight of the third and final day at the Literary Translation Center was a conversation among poets, editors, and translators about an exciting new book of contemporary Chinese poetry.  The book is called Jade Ladder—and the panelists discussing it, and related...

Translators of the World Unite!  (With Other Writers, who are also Translators)

Word for Word / Wort fur Wort Reading and book reception at Columbia University Deutches Haus, April 12, 2012 In perhaps the best kind of exchange program, three writers from Columbia’s MFA program went to Germany last year to swap their work with students at Das Deutsche...

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