Tag Archives: Literary translation

The Global Novel and Elena Ferrante’s Uncanny Underground Realism: Tiziana de Rogatis’ “Elena Ferrante’s Key Words,” translated from Italian by Will Schutt

By Isabella Pinto Translated from Italian by Rebecca Walker The long-awaited English language version of Tiziana de Rogatis’ Elena Ferrante’s Keywords, recently published by Europa Editions, has been made possible thanks to the work of translator Will Schutt. The volume is ordered thematically by keyword, and is divided into seven chapters, preceded by a comprehensive […]

“The Dangerous Charm of Leaving”: Bogdan Rusev’s “Come To Me,” Translated from Bulgarian by Ekaterina Petrova

By Philip Graham   The discovery of contemporary Bulgarian literature has been one of the great gifts of my recent reading life. Though the books I’ve read can be quite varied, they seem connected by a combination of humor and soulful melancholy, a literary territory where trouble can perhaps best be endured by sad or […]

Coming of Age Inside “A Bell Jar”: Magda Szabó’s “Abigail,” Translated from Hungarian by Len Rix

By Gabi Reigh “Creativity requires a state of grace,” Magda Szabó wrote in her 1987 novel The Door. “So many things are required for it to succeed—stimulus and composure, inner peace and a kind of bitter-sweet excitement.” Szabó’s life was not short of excitement, “bitter-sweet” or otherwise. She lived through the Second World War (which […]

In Search of the Weeping Woman: Brigitte Benkemoun’s “Finding Dora Maar,” Translated from French by Jody Gladding

By Mark Polizzotti Engaging with the life of a person you’ve never met can be an odd and disorienting business, and few know this better than biographers. What would push an otherwise sane adult to devote months, years, even decades to ferreting out the minutiae of someone else’s existence? And what is the strange alchemy […]

Word and Mirror: Burhan Sönmez’s “Labyrinth,” Translated from Turkish by Ümit Hussein

By Sevinç Türkkan Modern Turkish literature in English translation has always been meager. The Turkish language and culture with their liminal position across the imaginary East-West divide have been a cause for anxiety, reluctance, and uncertainty for publishers. It is, however, encouraging to see that contemporary writers other than the giants of Turkish letters in […]

A Terrible Beauty is Born: Fernanda Melchor’s “Hurricane Season,” Translated from Spanish by Sophie Hughes

By Emma B. B. Doyle The title of Fernanda Melchor’s Hurricane Season (La temporada de huracanes), translated by Sophie Hughes, takes its name from the many months in Mexico when you can look up at the sky and expect it to explode at any moment. This reliable forecast of disaster carries a similar tension to […]

Cardboard Conscious: Translation in Community

By Kelsi Vanada My favorite books of translated poetry to hold in my hands are no ordinary paperbacks: they are made of cardboard and screen-printed cardstock and hand-sewn signatures, crafted by independent publisher Cardboard House Press (CHP)’s Cartonera Collective in Phoenix, Arizona. I delight in handling them, rotating them to read the poems placed horizontally […]

“Gaza is Mayotte, Mayotte is France”: Natacha Appanah’s “Tropic of Violence” translated from French by Geoffrey Strachan

By Nathan Dize Gaza is a name capable of conjuring many ideas: statelessness, precarity, violence, tenuous and embargoed freedom, occupation, colonialism, and the list goes on. The name has also become synonymous with contested sovereignty in an era of postcolonial globalization, where, despite their supposed ephemerality, words like “settlements” and “camps” are imbued with a […]

A Most Intimate Fantasy: Marion Fayolle’s “The Tenderness of Stones,” Translated from French by Geoffrey Brock

By Neal Baker Across several graphic novels and two collections of wordless comics, Marion Fayolle has demonstrated her surreal imagination and her inclination toward visual comedy and metaphor. In The Tenderness of Stones, translated in English by Geoffrey Brock, she brings her practice to the personal. Written during and about the decline of her father’s […]

A Materialist Approach to Translation

By Sophie Drukman-Feldstein The translator’s sin is that of breaching the mythology which surrounds the individual authorial voice. The literary world erases the translator in order to preserve the liberal ideal of individual genius. And yet this erasure is not a distinctive problem of translation, but rather an expression of the worker’s alienation from the […]