Explore in translation
Fyodor Denisovich Konstantinov
‘A piece of boxwood, gripped in a vise, / waits on the workbench for his knife.’ Poetry by Lev Ozerov, translated from the Russian by Boris Dralyuk, and introduced by Robert Chandler.
I’ll Go On
‘Swish-swish, swish-swish. The sound fills the large space around them, and Nana finds this deeply satisfying.’
The Seafood Buffet
‘Things that felt like cold stones began to be piled around her ankles. Lemon halves.’
‘Even in a year in which Brazilians are not that excited about the competition, once the ref whistles and the match kicks off, an entire nation is frozen, hypnotised before their television screens. It’s the great truce, the great anaesthetic.’
Karl Kraus and Veza
‘It was natural that the rumors about both these people should reach me at the same time; they came from the same source, from which everything new for me came at that time.’
Brother in Ice
‘My brother is a man trapped in ice. He looks at us through it; he is there and he is not there.’
‘We hope that the copilot knows the terrain well. That his mask of youth conceals the face of a seasoned veteran of war. That he knows the minefields because he helped plant them.’
A Time for Everything
‘It can almost seem as if God was genuinely concerned about mankind.’ Translated by James Anderson.
Karl Ove Knausgaard | The Proust Questionnaire
'What is your most unappealing habit? Maybe all the brain-like chewing gums I leave behind everywhere I work.'
‘All those appetizing vessels exposed and available, O how delightfully vulnerable they are, it brings a tear to the eye.’
Equal Recognition | Discoveries
In an article for the LA Review of Books, Deborah Smith discusses the politics of literary translation and the backlash she received after winning the Man Booker International Prize.
‘Our nation is a spell of nerves and gas. We say yes to monsters, to elegies etched in our palms.’ Translated by Daniel Canty.
Writing While Worried
‘Just as it can spur me on, worry is adept at stifling and silencing.’
‘For years, you have been passing through my life; like a comet, disappearing as quickly as you come.’ Translated by Rhonda Mullins.
The Book Tree
‘I dreamed of dictionaries. I crammed myself with liquorice, honeymoons, caramels.’
Of Roses and Insects
‘The insects dissect the layers of my father’s life, our lives and my mother’s life that have collected in this sad house.’ Translated from the French by Neil Smith.
Life of the Father
‘Two times is a repetition. Three times is a tradition, or a curse.’ Translated from the French by Lazer Lederhendler.
‘Language is a risk that a nation takes. If a language survives, its people do too.’ Translated from the French by David Homel.
Seven People with the Same Name and their Discrete Moments
Erica Chung’s translation of ‘Seven People with the Same Name and their Discrete Moments’ by Han Yujoo is the winner of Harvill Secker’s Young Translators’ Prize 2017.
‘It was this summer that the restlessness came over me.’ Translated from the Norwegian by May-Brit Akerholt.
Language In Exile
One summer’s day, for the first time, Mitzi broached the past. Past in the present, so present, with everything it had deposited in this room that suddenly seemed so vast. Everything that the grim tide deposits on the shores of a life.
‘That supremacist is the idea, in those brothers and sisters of mine, of shyness (which no one understands) being an encumbrance that they should purge as they try to find in their interaction with the world a perfect mixture of disdain, meekness and expansiveness.’
‘Waking is now worse than falling asleep, I didn’t think that was possible.’ Translated from the Norwegian by Becky L. Crook.
Dead in Venice
‘If I wasn’t a fish spawned in the Brenta river, why was I so compelled to keep returning?’ Masahiko Shimada on his many trips to Venice.
From the Left Bank of the Flu
‘The big road looked to me like a river, the cars rushing by as if carried along on its current.’
You Okay for Time?
‘She wants to talk, she wants to unburden herself, but there’s nothing left so all she can do is cry.’ Translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori.
‘One piece of luck: I didn’t explain to the pianist how to play the piano.’ Translated from the French by Sophie Lewis.
Drive Your Plough Over the Bones of the Dead
‘They gazed at us calmly, as if we had caught them in the middle of performing some ritual whose meaning we could not fathom.’
‘Where emotions are suppressed and actions monitored, acting only becomes ubiquitous, and so convincing that we even trick ourselves.’
Best Book of 1926: Red Cavalry by Isaac Babel
His is a force more penetrative than all the bogus machismo of Hemingway.
‘When I picture my childhood, it’s like I’m swimming underwater.’ Merethe Lindstrøm’s story is translated from the Norwegian by Marta Eidsvåg, and is the winner of Harvill Secker’s Young Translators’ Prize 2016.
Winnie and the Innocence of the World
‘This is how I became Winnie’s clandestine, outcast and utterly powerless guardian angel.’