Thursday, May 11, 2006

Finds in translation

In The Guardian literary translator Eric Dickens argues that the British publishing industry should be creating and publishing more translations.
At the London Book Fair we were treated to soothing words that told us that it was quite normal that only three per cent of books published in Britain are translations. At the Leipzig Book Fair a few days later, a Ukrainian intellectual spoke about the state of his culture. Yuri Andrukhovych has written one of the few Ukrainian postmodernist novels to have been translated into English - Perverzion, translated by Michael Naydan - but he is also a blunt purveyor of home truths when it comes to central and eastern Europe. At Leipzig, Andrukhovych suggested that Ukrainians should be afforded visa-free travel to western Europe. But are they being afforded such travel into the minds of British readers?

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