Women in Translation Month

In honor of #WITmonth, here’s a list of a few interviews and reviews I’ve done that feature women writers whose work has been translated into English. The campaign was founded by Meytal Radzinski in 2014 to deal with the dearth of women writers in translation. You can read more about it and the events it’s spawned here. There are great resources there, books recommended, and good links.

Meanwhile, have a look at three authors I’ve had words with and about. I adore their books, so please buy them! Read them attentively. Then tell friends.

In no particular order:

*”In an age of what some have called High Interiority in literature a la Knausgaard, Ferrante, and the oodles of revelatory memoirs flooding the market, Helle Helle’s intimate novel This Should Be Written in the Present Tense shouldn’t seem out of place….Instead, it turns out we’re in for something quite different.” So begins my review of the Danish author’s first novel to be translated into English for Electric Literature. In my interview of her for Bookslut, she shares great bits about her writing process. “A novel can’t be thought into existence, it has to be written. The hands are always wiser than the head.”

*Argentinian author Samanta Schweblin‘s debut novel Fever Dream was shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize and has received a ton of rightly deserved attention. I interviewed her for Full Stop where we spoke about the novel living inside the reader, politics, and her thoughts on translation. “[I]t is curious how translation methods can change from one country to another. Germans, for example, they are so analytic, so exhaustive. I met three times for at least two hours with my translator for the last book.”

*Lastly, I reviewed Belgian author Madeleine Bourdouxhe’s 1937 novella La Femme de Gilles for 3:AM Magazine. This was reissued by Melville House as part of their Never Sink series, and in the review I consider, among other things, why now for this particular work. “[W]hy, we might ask, is this book receiving attention now? Is Bourdouxhe’s tale important to recover because this is a woman writing about a woman? Does it not complicate the female experience to have women represented variously?”

For more, many more, recommendations of who to read and what else is going on this month, also check out Susan Bernofsky’s excellent site Translationista.

helle helle
Helle Helle


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s