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Host Publications Women in Translation Month Reading List

Happy Women in Translation Month, friends!  

As you can probably guess, the Host Publications squad absolutely loves celebrating WIT every August, because there are two things we're very passionate about: translated literature, and bringing women's voices to the front. The percentage of books translated into English that are written by women remains far too small, so we not only love the experience of reading these books, we love giving them some extra love and promotion during this time of the year.

Below, you'll find the first official Host Publications Women In Translation Month Reading List, which includes many of our all-time favorite WIT titles, some new faves, a few books that are on our "to-read" lists, and even some books translated by women, another angle to WIT month that we feel shouldn't be overlooked! We are so grateful for and amazed by our beloved translators. 

From the "Fiction" section, we'd like to highlight Our Lady of The Nile by Scholastique Mukasonga, translated by Melanie Mauthner (Archipelago Books). Scholastique Mukasonga is a Rwandan author, born in 1956. From childhood, Mukasonga experienced the violence of the ethnic conflicts that shook her country, and this is palpable in her writing. Our Lady of The Nile focuses on different girls in a Catholic boarding school, their stories individual but linked, with some light and fun passages that depict the idiosyncrasies of being a young Rwandan girl at boarding school in the 70s. But bubbling under the surface is the ethnic division between Hutu and Tutsi, largely instigated by colonialism, which led to the genocide in 1994. With streamlined and irresistible prose, Mukasonga captures a society hurtling toward horror within the microcosm of Our Lady of the Nile boarding school for girls. 

From our "Nonfiction" section, The Age of Skin: Essays by Dubravka Ugresic (Open Letter Books), winner of the Neustadt International Prize, offers an iconic combination of irony, compassion, and a sharp polemic gaze in this collection of beautiful and highly relevant essays. Writing with biting humor and a multitude of cultural references—from La La Land and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, to tattoos and body modification, World Cup chants, and the preservation of Lenin’s corpse—this collection reveals the hopes, dreams and fears of contemporary life. 

From "Poetry," we are particularly excited about the forthcoming NYRB title, Shapeshifter by Alice Paleen Rahon, a poet and artist who began as a surrealist poet in Europe, and began painting as an ex-pat in Mexico. Her poetry has heretofore been difficult if not impossible to find translated into English, but for the first time in any language, Shapeshifter gathers the three collections of poetry Rahon published in her lifetime, along with uncollected and unpublished poems and an album of portraits, manuscript pages, and artworks. As major fans of the oft forgotten women of the Surrealist movement, we couldn't be more excited to get our hands on this forthcoming title! 

We'll be discussing a few of the titles listed below in more detail on our podcast, The Host Dispatch, in the forthcoming Women In Translation Month episode, so keep your ears open for that. We're hope you find some reading inspiration in this book list!

 

Fiction 

The Hour of the Star by Clarice Lispector, trans. by Benjamin Moser (New Directions) 

Our Lady of the Nile by Scholastique Mukasonga, trans. by Melanie Mauthner (Archipelago Books)

Flights by Olga Tokarczuk, trans. by Jennifer Croft (Riverhead Books)

The Summer Book by Tove Jansson, trans. by Thomas Teal (NYRB)

Notes of a Crocodile by Qui Miaojin, trans. by Bonnie Huie (NYRB)

Other Worlds: Peasants, Pilgrims, Spirits and Saints by Teffi, trans. by Robert Chandler and Elizabeth Chandler  (NYRB)

Ponciá Vicencio by Conceição Evaristo, trans. by Paloma Martinez-Cruz (Host Publications)

Hurricane Season by Fernanda Melchor, trans. by Sophie Hughes (New Directions) 

Sweet Days of Discipline by Fleur Jaeggy, trans. by Tim Parks (New Directions)

Blood Sisters by Kim Yideum, trans. by Ji Yoon Li (Deep Vellum)

The First Wife: A Tale of Polygamy by Paulina Chiziane, trans. By David Brookshaw (Archipelago) 

Rogomelec by Leonor Fini, trans. by Serens Shanken Skwersky and William T. Kulik (Wakefield)

Tokyo Ueno Station by Yu Miri, trans. by Morgan Giles (Riverhead Books)

Cars on Fire by Mónica Ramón Ríos, trans. by Robin Myers (Open Letter)

Go, Went, Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck trans. by Susan Bernofsky (New Directions)

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, trans. by Muriel Barbery (Europa Editions) 

The Bridge of Beyond by Simone Schwartz-Bart, trans. by Barbara Bray (NYRB)

> > Sci-Fi & Dystopian Narratives <  <

The Taiga Syndrome by Christina Rivera Garza, trans. by Suzanne Jill Levine and Aviva Kana (Dorothy, A Publishing Project)

The Slynx by Tatyana Tolstaya, trans. by Jamie Gambrell (NYRB)

The Emissary by Yoko Tawada, trans. by Margaret Mitsutani (New Directions)

Non-Fiction

Sexographies by Gabriela Wiener, trans. by Jennifer Adcock and Lucy Greaves (Restless Books)

The Great Camouflage by Suzanne Cesaire, trans. by Keith L. Walker (Wesleyan University Press)

Condition of Secrecy by Inger Christensen, trans. by Susanna Nied (New Directions)

On the Abolition of all Political Parties by Simone Wiel, trans. by Simon Leys (NYRB)

A Tradition of Rupture by Alejandra Pizarnik, trans. by Cole Heinowitz (UDP)

The Age of Skin: Essays by Dubravka Ugresik, trans. by Ellen Elias-Bursać (Open Letter Books)

Letters, Dreams and other Writings by Remedios Varo, trans. by Margaret Carson (Wakefield)

American Fictionary by Dubravka Ugresic, trans. by Celia Hawkesworth and Ellen Elias-Bursać  (Open Letter)

A Ghost in the Throat by Doireann Ní Ghríofa, with translations by the author (Biblioasis)

Poetry

The Galloping Hour by Alejandra Pizarnik, trans. by Patricio Ferrari and Forrest Gander (New Directions)

Poems by Urszula  Kozioł, trans. by Regina Grol (Host Publications) 

Some Girls Walk Into the Country They Are From by Sawako Nakayasu (Wave Books)

Sea Summit by Yi Lu, trans. by Fiona Sze-Lorrain 

Sense Violence by Helena Boberg, trans. by Johannes Göransson (Black Ocean)

Selected Poems of Silvina Ocampo, trans. by Jason Weiss (NYRB)

Reason Enough Ida Vitale, trans. by Sarah Pollack (Host Publications)

Autobiography of Death by Kim Hyesoon, trans. by Don Mee Choi (NDP)

Alphabet by Inger Christensen, trans. by Susanna Nied (NDP)

Here There Was Once a Country by Venus Khoury-ghata, trans. by Marilyn Hacker (Oberlin College Press)

The Red Song by Melisa Machado, trans. by Seth Michelson (Action Books)

Moscow in the Plague Year by Marina Tsvetaeva, trans. by Christopher Whyte (Archipelago)

I Remember Nightfall by Marosa di Giorgio, trans. by Jeannine Marie Pitas (Ugly Duckling Presse)

Of Death. Minimal Odes by Hilda Hilst, trans. by Laura Cesarco Elgin (co-im-press)

Collected Poems of Chika Sagawa trans. by Sawako Nakayasu (Modern Library)

Rain of the Future by Valerie Mejer, trans. by A.S. Zelman-Doring, Forrest Gander, and C.D. Wright (Action Books)

Dreaming Escape by Valentina Saracini, trans. by Erica Weitzman (UDP)

Raised by Wolves: Poems and Conversations by Amang, trans. By Steve Bradbury (Deep Vellum)

Shapeshifter by Alice Paleen Rahon, trans. by Mary Ann Caws (NYRB - Forthcoming!)

Translated BY Women

The Odyssey (Homer) trans. by Emily Wilson (WW Norton)

The Milkbowl of Feathers - edited and trans. by Mary Ann Caws (New Directions)

Yi Sang: Selected Works - trans. by Don Mee Choi (Wave Books) 

If Not, Winter: Fragments of Sappho - trans. by Anne Carson (Vintage)

Anna Karenina (Leo Tolstoy) - trans. by Marian Schwartz (Yale University Press)

Ambers Aglow: An Anthology of Contemporary Polish Women's Poetry edited and trans. by Regina Grol (Host Publications)

Revenge of the Translator (Brice Matthieussent) trans. by Emma Ramadan (Deep Vellum) 

On Translation

Say Translation is Art by Sawako Nakayasu (Ugly Duckling)

Translation Is a Mode=Translation Is An Anti-Neocolonial Mode by Don Lee Choi

Notes on Mother Tongues: Colonialism, Class and Giving What You Don't Have by Mirene Arsanios 




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