The Enigma of Estonian Literature: Title Picks by Translator Adam Cullen

Estonian literature is an enigma. Not Churchill’s Russian riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma – no, the abyss between the Russian and Estonian cultures and languages is vast despite their geographic proximity, the former being Indo-European and the latter Finno-Ugric in essence. Rather, the culture – and the language – of Estonia is … Continue reading The Enigma of Estonian Literature: Title Picks by Translator Adam Cullen

Title Pick: I’m an Old Commie! by Dan Lungu (Romania)

Emilia, a pensioner in northern Romania, is forced to confront the nostalgic illusions she nurtures as a reaction to the grim post-communist present when her daughter, now living in Canada, telephones urging her not to vote for the former communists in upcoming elections. Determined to discover in her own mind why ‘things were better back … Continue reading Title Pick: I’m an Old Commie! by Dan Lungu (Romania)

The Beautiful Contradictions of Rosario Ferré’s Flight of the Swan

This month we will be taking in and discussing some of the literature of the island of Puerto Rico, whose beautiful prose is matched by the strength of its people’s character. Rarely have I come across a novel so masterfully layered as Rosario Ferré’s Flight of the Swan. Like the movements of its ballet prima … Continue reading The Beautiful Contradictions of Rosario Ferré’s Flight of the Swan

Memories of a GLLI Intern: Must-Read Adult Literature from the Middle East and North Africa (Part 2) – by Nneka Mogbo

The works I chose for my adult and college-aged list tell stories of conflicts (both good, bad and internal or external) that stem from interacting with different cultures. An interaction may be caused by one’s exile from a home country, moving to a new country for better opportunities, changes in generational beliefs or living in … Continue reading Memories of a GLLI Intern: Must-Read Adult Literature from the Middle East and North Africa (Part 2) – by Nneka Mogbo

Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: Season of Migration to the North (1969)

SEASON OF MIGRATION TO THE NORTH was selected by the Arab Literary Academy as the most important Arab novel of the 20th century, and is frequently cited as one of the most important post-colonial works in any language. Eminently readable, the metaphorical exploration of the relationship between colonial powers and their victims and the politics … Continue reading Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: Season of Migration to the North (1969)

Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: Forbidden Colours (1968)

The #TA60 list of classics in translation celebrates the 60th anniversary of The Society of Authors Translators Association by acknowledging the translators who rewrote these great books so anglophone readers could enjoy them. Please share, and remember: always #namethetranslator! FORBIDDEN COLOURS by Yukio Mishima was translated from the Japanese by Alfred H. Marks and published in English in 1968, two … Continue reading Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: Forbidden Colours (1968)

TRANSLATORS ASSOCIATION – 60 YEARS OF CLASSIC TRANSLATIONS: The Master and Margarita (1967)

“рукописи не горят.” – “Manuscripts don’t burn.” Mikhail Bulgakov’s extraordinary socio-political satire THE MASTER AND MARGARITA, in which Satan (in disguise) and his demonic cat wreak havoc among Moscow’s literary elite, was first published in book form in 1967. Bulgakov wrote the novel during the Stalinist repression of 1930s Russia and was still revising it … Continue reading TRANSLATORS ASSOCIATION – 60 YEARS OF CLASSIC TRANSLATIONS: The Master and Margarita (1967)

Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: The Ice Palace (1966)

For almost 300 years Norway and Denmark were united kingdoms, and Danish was the sole official language. When the two countries separated in 1814 a linguistic struggle ensued in Norway with different versions of written and spoken Norwegian competing for official recognition. The heavily Danish-influenced Norwegian of the 19th century urban and educated classes evolved … Continue reading Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: The Ice Palace (1966)

Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: I am David (1965)

The #TA60 list of classics in translation celebrates the 60th anniversary of The Society of Authors Translators Association by acknowledging the translators who rewrote these great books so Anglophone readers could enjoy them. Please share, and remember: always #namethetranslator! I AM DAVID by Anne Holm was a landmark in 20th century children’s literature. Until it … Continue reading Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: I am David (1965)

Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: Labyrinths (1962)

1962 is represented in The Society of Authors #TA60 series of classic translations by Jorge Luis Borges, whose surreal prose is often seen as having opened the door to magical realism. The influential Argentine writer was largely unknown in the English-speaking world until he was awarded the prestigious Prix International jointly with Samuel Beckett. The … Continue reading Translators Association – 60 Years of Classic Translations: Labyrinths (1962)