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Issue 11 — February 2005
East continues to translate East
We are pleased to announce that the East Translates East Publication Project launched last year will continue through 2005. The grant-giving competition will be held in three rounds – one for promotion grants and two for translation grants. Detailed information on the requirements and application procedures can be found in the announcements section. We believe that book translation, publishing and promotion are crucial to the exchange of ideas, sharing of information and knowledge of cultures between Central and Eastern Europe. We invite all publishers who share this vision to apply. The next deadline is March 20.
Newly published books
Barbu Constantinescu, Romani Fairy Tales, (Editura Limes, Cluj Napoka, 2005) trilingual: Romani/Romanian/English, translated into English by Michaela Mudure, supported by Romani Publications project.
The edition re-publishes (in Romani and Romanian) and translates into English one of the first scholarly publications ever dedicated to Romani culture. The collection of poems and tales accompanied by concise grammatical, lexical and ethnographic commentaries was first published in 1878. Barbu Constantinescu, a collector and author of the texts, is among the few scholars who are claimed to be founders of the written Romani tradition, in the process spreading the social functions of Romani. His aim was to document the oral tradition and to offer it to the Romani and general public, thus, contributing to development of Romani as a language of cultural and educational importance. These efforts go back to 1875 when C. Leland, H. Palmer and V. Turner who published the collection of English Gypsy Songs, work that was later continued by Hindes Groome, Diane Tong and others.
Romani Fairy Tales is expected to reach a wide audience and to have a significant impact on readers from Romani youth and teachers of Romani classes through Roma activists, historians, linguists, literary scholars and non-Roma who are in Romani Studies or are interested in Romani culture.
Sándor Márai, A gyertyák csonkig égnek (Candles Burn to the End), (Atena Publishers, Riga, 2005 - Latvian title: Sveces izdeg lidz galam), transl. into Latvian by Elga Sakse, supported by East Translates East Publications Project
This is a wonderfully published Latvian translation of the forgotten 1942 masterpiece of Sandor Marai – a celebrated Hungarian writer, who was persecuted by the Communists after the war and was forced to flee his native country in 1948. His notable novel, the plot of which is based on a dinner conversation between two old friends who have not seen each other for forty one years and have to reconcile with their distant past, can be compared with the works of Mann, Marquez and Calvino. After it was reprinted in Hungary in 1989, Viking spent over 100,000£ to buy the English language rights of the novel, translated in the UK under the title Embers. Knopf is the publisher who owns the rights in US. Since its publication in English (2001) Marai’s novel has been widely reviewed in the US and UK. J.M. Coetzee and Tibor Fischer are only two of the literary celebrities who wrote articles about the English publication. Fischer writes in “The Guardian” that “...the embers in the title refer to the dying fire of two loves (…), but also to the dying of an empire and of a way of life.” Surprisingly, Candles Burn to the End has been translated into English not from Hungarian but from German, generally considered a questionable practice. Though according to Fischer, this “secondhand” translation is surprisingly faithful to the original. In this sense, the Latvian publisher and translator are to be commended for reminding us from the margins of wider Europe some of the basic rules of literary translation.
Donna Haraway, How Like a Leaf: An Interview with Thyrza Nichols Goodeve, (Centar za Zenske studije i istrazivanja roda, Beograd, 2004 - Serbian title: Malik Listu), transl. into Serbian by Ranko Mastilovic; supported by Lesbian and Gay Translation Project With this elegant publication, the Belgrade Center for Women’s Studies hosts a long and branching into different directions interview with the feminist philosopher of cyborgs and of social phenomena of the new technologies – Donna Haraway. The layers of the conversation cover most of the theoretical topics launched by the world-famous feminist thinker: primates, women, cyborgs, onco-mice, vampires, passion and irony. Musing upon the boundaries of humanity, but also contemplating what exists beyond the human, this interview surmounts the biographical curves of Haraway, and sounds more like a transcript of a new and changing/challenging world. Besides its utopian horizons, this publication of Haraway perfectly enters the debate on bioethics, which is yet to be bursting forth into South-Eastern Europe.
Other supported translations
Romani Women Can Do It!, documentary in Romani, translated and dubbed by Lilyana Kovacheva, supported by the Romani Publications project.
The Romani version of the film previously produced in Bulgarian, presents interviews with participants in a project Romani Women Can Do It along with other stakeholders’ opinions. The film aims to encourage Roma women to participate in public and political life and to raise awareness of gender equality amongst Roma women. The women interviewed speak about their motivation to participate in initiatives which address gender issues. Romani Women Can Do It also presents the Roma leaders’ attitude to these issues and their readiness to give opportunities to Roma women to change the existing patriarchal stereotypes of male and female roles in Roma communities. The film presents good practices and its results underpin the positive images that are breaking prejudices and the misconception that Romani women have limited potential.
Apart from circulation in Bulgaria, important promotional activities took part at the official launching of the Decade of Roma Inclusion (2005-2015), on February 2nd in Sofia, where the video tape was distributed among representatives of international Roma related institutions such as the Council of Europe Work Group on Roma People Issues, Roma and Travelers Forum at the Council of Europe, International Romani Union, OSCE and Stability Pact Gender Task Force.
Next Generation - Next Page!
On February 2nd, Next Page Director Yana Genova gave birth to a bouncing baby boy. Pavel Alexandrov Kiossev weighed in at a healthy 3.5 kilos and measured 50 cms long. Congratulations to Yana, Sasho and family!