Archives

April, 2014

Where the Sidewalk Bends: Interview with Pacha Urbano

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Brazilian writer, illustrator, and screenwriter Pacha Urbano describes his brain as “an ideas factory that never stops.” His genre-defying projects include the aphoristic book Livro Ao Acaso (Book of Serendipity), the comic strip Filho do Freud (Freud’s Son), a compilation of that series…...

New in Spanish: Germán Sierra’s “Standards”

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When Pálido Fuego, the publisher that has worked to bring such voices as Mark Leyner and Lars Iyers to audiences in Spain, decided to publish its first book from within that country’s borders, Germán Sierra’s fourth novel Standards was a fitting choice. Sierra is a representative…...

From the Translators: On “Regeneration”

In “Regeneration,” it’s said that Juan, the chief protagonist, “feared the loneliness of his apartment more than he did the tedium of the bar.” Like most writers, we translators revel in the loneliness of our apartments: we choose to work alone, in a darkened room, with…...

March, 2014

The Week in Translation

GO what:French Literature in the Making: Patrick Deville when: Monday, March 31, 7pm where: Maison Française of NYU more info: http://ow.ly/upTev what: "Spring into Poetry" when: April 16-29 where: various locations in NYC more info: http://ow.ly/vdLpu what: 45th Poetry International…...

A night of writing in translation from Dalkey Archive Press

Translators were at the foreground at last night’s celebration of Dalkey Archive Press at the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute in New York. Organized by the Americas Society, the event brought together four of Dalkey’s brilliant writers and translators: Alejandro Branger, Eduardo Lago, Rowan…...

My Favorite Bookstore: Karen Havelin on Tronsmo Bøker og Tegneserier

Tronsmo Bøker og Tegneserier, Kristian Augusts gate 19, 0164 Oslo, Norway There are times when I’m traveling, and feeling exhausted by the strangeness of a place, when the appearance of a bookstore with literature in a language I can read makes all the difference. An hour or two…...

The City and the Writer: In Cleveland with Sarah Marcus

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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 Cleveland as you feel/see it? Cleveland is like…...

The Week in Translation

what:Comparative Analysis of Camus and Derrida when: March 24, 2014, 7pm where: Maison Française of NYU more info: http://ow.ly/upT8c what:French Literature in the Making: Patrick Deville when: Monday, March 31, 7pm where: Maison Française of NYU more info: http://ow.ly/upTev…...

New in Hebrew: Shifra Cornfeld’s “The Second Half of the Night”

My husband and I both read The Second Half of the Night, by Shifra Cornfeld, in one breathless week, so excited about it that I can’t even recall who read it first and who passed it on to whom. Then we gave it to a friend. Then quickly took it back so we could give it to our mothers. It was a gift…...

The City and the Writer: In Zürich with Charif Shanahan

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 Special Series / Switzerland, 2014 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…...

Where the Sidewalk Bends: Carnaval Edition

At the Carnaval blocos (street parties) in Rio last week—rising above the sea of fluorescent wigs, animal ears, and sequined fedoras—I saw the same three signs reappear: Não Vai Ter Copa (There Won’t Be A World Cup), Tá Tudo Caro (Everything’s Expensive), and,…...

From the Translator: Standing Stone Souls: My Journey into the Poetry of María Auxiliadora Álvarez

The Yucatan Peninsula has always had a powerful hold on me. I used to say I went there for refueling with every rite of passage. This particular trip had been a surprise. Following my divorce, after a twenty-year marriage that was as difficult as it was long, I had gone to my high- school class reunion.…...

Rational Animal

I did not meet Maya K’iche’ poet Pablo García in person; rather, as with a number of other poets whose work I have translated, my first contact with him was in a bookstore, where I read his poems aloud to myself in Spanish. I had come across his bilingual K’iche’-Spanish…...

The Week in Translation

what: Translation Matters: A Panel Discussion with Cristina Garcia, Kolin Jordan, Achy Obejas, and Valeria Luiselli, moderated by WWB editorial director Susan Harris when: March 19, 20014, 5 pm where: Humboldt Park Fieldhouse, 1400 N. Sacramento (North of Division), Chicago, IL more info: http://guildcomplex.org/event/panel-translation-matters/…...

Stealth Methods: Teaching Translation

I admit it: I’m sneaky when it comes to international literature. I try to sneak translated texts and even just the awareness of language and translation into all of my classes. And why not? Literature comes from all over the world, and if we’re trying to produce well-educated students, it…...

Is Translation Edible?

The plate can be a tricky place for translators. Who’s in charge, the brain or the stomach? Do words reveal or hide what’s on the plate? Food is culture much more than it is words, and learning the names of new foods and pantry items is only step one. Culture does not reside in dictionaries.…...

The City and the Writer: In Lugano with Fabiano Alborghetti

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Special Series / Switzerland, 2014 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…...

The Week in Translation

GO what: Peaver and Volokhonsky An intimate conversation about the art of translation​ with world-renowned translators, Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky. Hosted by Susan Bernofsky. when: Wednesday, March 12, 7pm where: Dodge Hall, Columbia University what: Peru's Underground/American…...

Translation at AWP

Last week’s AWP conference featured an impressive array of panels on translation’s growing presence in the creative writing world. Among those was a panel titled “Double Lives: Writer/Translators,” moderated by WWB editorial director Susan Harris, in which poets who translate…...

Where the Sidewalk Bends: Notes from a Poet in Rio

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Shortly after sundown on February 2nd, I boarded a snow-covered Boeing 777 in New York City, my bags stuffed to just under the weight limit with clothes and books, and landed the following morning on a palm tree-lined tarmac in São Paulo. It’s been eight years since I last passed through…...

My Favorite Bookstore: Ian Ferrier on The Word

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The Word, 469 Milton Street, Montreal, Quebec There’s a little second-hand bookstore near McGill University in Montreal that has been my favorite stop for years. It’s called The Word, and like many good bookstores around the world, it hasn’t changed a whole lot in 30 years. I know this…...

February, 2014

Publishing against the Grain

I became a publisher out of sheer frustration. The reason is closely tied to my self-definition as an immigrant. I moved from Mexico to the United States in the mid-‘80s seeking intellectual freedom. I dreamed of becoming an essayist and wanted to be right at the epicenter of culture. Almost from…...

The City and the Writer: In Bucharest with Mircea Cărtărescu

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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 Bucharest as you feel/see it? Bucharest is like the…...

Translator Relay: Ellen Elias-Bursac

What is your connection to the language(s) you translate from and/or the place(s) where the books you translate are written? When I was an undergraduate, my Russian professors were so anti-Soviet that they wanted us to spend our junior year abroad studying Russian at Radio Free Europe in Munich.…...

NYC Event: An Evening with Leonardo Padura, February 26

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Where: 61 Local, 61 Bergen Street, Brooklyn When: February 26, 7 PM In The Man Who Loved Dogs, Leonardo Padura explores one of the most compelling and complex political plots of the last century—the assassination of Leon Trotsky by Ramón Mercader in Mexico City. Kirkus calls the…...

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