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April 2010

PEN World Voices

The PEN World Voices Festival launches its sixth annual celebration of global literature at the end of this month, and we're kicking off the party with a sampler of new writing from a selection of the participants.  From an orphan’s rage to a widower’s serenity, in bleak housing projects and luminous seaside resorts, writers explore topics local and universal. See how Alina Bronsky, Assaf Gavron, Valter Hugo Mãe, Quim Monzó, Sofi Oksanen, Atiq Rahimi, Andrzej Stasiuk, and Jean-Philippe Toussaint create their own worlds in strikingly varied voices. And don’t miss WWB’s panel discussion featuring Quim Monzó, Peter Schneider, and Jean-Philippe Toussaint discussing the essay on Saturday, May 1, from 5:30 to 6:30, at Scandinavia House, 58 Park Avenue.

Words without Borders gratefully acknowledges for its grant in support of the publication of the April 2010 PEN World Voices issue.

from “Purge”
When the Baltic Germans were invited into Germany in the fall of 1939, one of the sisters’ German classmates from school and confirmation classes came to say good-bye, and promised to return. She…
Translated from Finnish
from “Dukla”
One Saturday the summer vacationers appeared. The village was slowly becoming a tourist spot. A few cabins, a woebegone hostel, a kiosk selling Wyszków beer in its special bottles. The locals were…
Translated from Polish
from “Almost Dead”
I climbed aboard the Little No. 5 as I did every morning on my way to work. “Little No. 5” is what I call the minibus-sized cab which follows the route of the No. 5 bus. It’s actually…
Translated from Hebrew
from “Broken Glass Park”
I hate men. Anna says good men do exist. Nice, friendly men who cook and help clean up and who earn money. Men who want to have children and give gifts and book vacations. Who wear clean clothes, don’t…
Translated from German
Let’s not talk about Prague. We spent a lover’s weekend there, Madeleine and I, around Easter, in an almost windowless attic room which gave the impression of being in some tawdry flophouse,…
Translated from French