Blog Archives

Russia: knife, fork, and ladle

The Romanovs, Lenin, Gagarin – they all had their cooks. Holodomor, Leningrad, Chernobyl, Afghanistan – sometimes there is nothing (safe) to cook at all. For some people, like the Tatars, cooking is all you have left of home. Others, like

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Posted in books, translation

Foucault in Warsaw

In Warsaw in 1958, Foucault was writing his History of Madness. Then, it was his PhD, and he was the first director of the university’s French Cultural Centre. Within a year, he’d left Poland. Was Jurek, his mystery lover, to

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Posted in books, translation

Waiting for translation: Wolf River

It is two years and more since this pandemic began. In March 2020, it hadn’t knocked Europe out yet, but it was going to very soon. The signs were there. In March 2020, this book began. It hadn’t knocked me

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Posted in books, translation

Women in Translation Month: The Map

Is this an adventure novel, war memoir, seven short stories, or one of those new approaches to history through objects? It’s all that and more. The real protagonist is not a person, but a map. Do you know Rembrandt van

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Posted in books, translation, Women in Translation Month

The lost soul – zgubiona dusza

The man was moving so fast he had completely forgotten why he was moving at all. So he went to see a wise woman. And the wise woman said, “Slow down. You have to wait for your soul to catch

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Posted in books, Illustration, Nobel Prize in Literature, translation

 Honey, I Killed the Cats

                  After translations into dozens of languages, this has taken seven years to appear in English, but the wait is worth it. A twentysomething woman in the States, still hopelessly single when

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Posted in books, translation

Accomodations

Wiola is growing up. We are still growing up in parallel. She is a student in Poland exactly when I am a student in Poland, the academic session of 1995/1996. Except I’m in Warsaw for a year of my degree,

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Posted in books, translation

Swallowing Mercury

Wioletta Greg is frankly fantastic, and Eliza Marciniak has rendered her voice in English delightfully. A good friend gave this translation of Swallowing Mercury for my birthday, and her only concern was that I might have it already, but I might not

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Posted in books, history, literature, translation

Drive your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead

It can be both easier and harder to translate an author who is so aware of the translation process herself. The heroine of this novel and her friend are translating Blake into Polish; they come up with multiple versions of

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Posted in books, film, translation

Women in Translation Month: Ginczanka

Whenever I am in Warsaw, there are a couple of bookshops near the university that I have to visit. I always come out with something unexpected that keeps me going till I can come back to Poland. This time, the

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Posted in books, gender, poetry, translation
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