Posts Tagged: translation
The Berlin-based author Yoko Tawada recently remarked that one of the difficulties she faced when translating Kafka’s short story “Metamorphosis” into Japanese was that the associations Japanese people had with insects—even presumably giant beetles—were different to those of Europeans.
In the Japan Times, Damian Flanagan traces the difficulties of translating “insect literature.”...more
Literature continually reminds us that we are not alone and (to paraphrase Kundera) that things are not always as simple as they seem. With so many stories, histories, characters and figures populating a reader’s mind, it’s easy for us to take for granted the liberation that literature imparts.
Whether you’re a writer or not, you can imagine looking at your life and thinking, “What have I done?” What she’s doing in these books is asking, “What does my life mean?” She’s using that concrete image of being a writer and having a friendship, but she’s investigating the meaning of life.
On Tuesday, London-based journal The White Review dropped its third annual translation issue, which features a truly global range of voices from Israel to Indonesia, South Africa to Russia. Among them is a fascinating new story by Bolivian writer Liliana Colanzi, translated by Frances Riddle....more
For this I hate New Years. I want every morning to be a new year for me. I want to evaluate my life every day and renew my life every day. No days budgeted for rest. I choose when to take a break, when I feel drunk with the intensity of life and I want to dive into my animalistic self to discover new energy.
At Aeon, John McWhorter explores the twists and turns through English’s linguistic history that brought us the “deeply peculiar” language structure used today....more
At Lit Hub, André Naffis-Sahely discusses the vital importance of translation as a way to preserve a cultural/historical record. Translation improves a book’s chances of survival. In a way, it must. What one culture proves indifferent to, might find a better reception in another....more
AmazonCrossing, the Amazon.com publishing arm that deals with works translated into English, will dedicate $10 million to expand its efforts over the next five years. This move will most likely position the publisher as the largest of translations in the US:
Even without exact numbers, there is more than enough evidence to suggest that AmazonCrossing has found a level of success.
Shakespeare is about the intoxicating richness of the language… It’s like the beer I drink. I drink 8.2 per cent I.P.A., and by changing the language in this modernizing way, it’s basically shifting to Bud Light. Bud Light’s acceptable, but it just doesn’t pack the punch and the excitement and the intoxicating quality of that language.
Translated literature is as much a product of the translator as it is the writer. After years of in the doldrums, literature in translation is making a resurgence as the art and skill has modernized. The Financial Times takes a look at the people responsible for bringing non-English texts to English readers and exporting English texts to other languages....more
This week brings us two stories in translation. First, “Six Days in Glorious Vienna,” at Hobart, is a quiet story with a punch. By Japanese author Yoko Ogawa and translated by Stephen Snyder, the story is part of the anthology A Kind of Compass: Stories on Distance, released on Thursday by Irish publisher Tramp Press....more
After reading the first two books in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan series, Sara Goldsmith enlisted her mother to translate the third book from Italian so that she didn’t have to wait another year for the English release. Now, for Slate, Goldsmith shares how the experience generated a new respect for the scope and craft of Ferrante’s novels, as well as how the project influenced her relationship with her mother:
For my mom and me—who, like all mothers and daughters, sometimes have a difficult relationship—the novels have given us a way to stay in closer touch and a subject to return to and discuss.
No matter how many times you tell them not to, people will judge a book by its cover. This Italian publisher has capitalized on our weakness for pretty things with iconic cover art that toes the line between literature and fashion:
Italians have always known the importance of making una bella figura.
She couldn’t remember the last time she’d been alone with herself. Maybe never. It was always her–with others, and in these others she was reflected and the others were reflected in her. Nothing was–was pure, she thought without understanding what she meant.
This week, two underappreciated masters of the weird and uncanny are finally getting their due attention. That’s right, we’re talking about Clarice Lispector and Shirley Jackson, two literary powerhouses who wrote contemporaneously in different styles, different languages, even different hemispheres, but who have some striking similarities....more
We’ve noticed a new wave of love for Clarice Lispector recently, and so has Benjamin Anastas at The New Republic. With the new translation and release of a complete edition of her stories, Anastas outlines how Lispector has been given the “Bolaño treatment—and the global acclaim she has long deserved.”...more
Revise your summer reading lists, ladies and gentlemen, because this week brought us new issues of Guernica and Asymptote to bump to the top of the pile. Asymptote delivers more of its consistently stunning literature in translation, including a haunting story from the late Uruguayan author Mario Levrero about a very, very strange house....more
The dream of a global literary community is not new. But as globalization has not meant greater political or economic equality, cultural cosmopolitanism has not been guaranteed by instant communication and inexpensive travel. These do, however, present significant new opportunities for literary activism.