Translation as Transhumance

Translation as Transhumance

By (author)  , Translated by  , Foreword by  , Edited by  , Edited by 

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Mireille Gansel grew up in the traumatic aftermath of her family losing everything - including their native language - to Nazi Germany. In the 1960s and '70s, she translated poets from East Berlin and Vietnam to help broadcast their defiance to the rest of the world. Winner of a French Voices Award and an English PEN Award, this half memoir, half philosophical treatise is a humanist meditation on the art of translation. Gansel considers estrangement as her price paid for the priviledge of moving between tongues, and muses on how translation becomes an exercise of empathy among those in exile. `In this memoir of a translator's adventures, Mireille Gansel shows us what it means to enter another language through its culture, and to enter the life of another culture through its language. A sensitive and insightful book, which illuminates the difficult, and often underestimated task of translation - and the role of literature in making for a more interconnected and humane world.' - Eva Hoffman, author of 'Lost in Translation: A Life in A New Language'show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 128 pages
  • 130 x 200 x 7mm | 83g
  • Les Fugitives
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English, French, German
  • black & white photograph in frontispiece
  • 0993009336
  • 9780993009334
  • 679,902

Review quote

'This beautiful and moving meditation on her life's work by a renowned translator, though extremely short, yields a history not just of twentieth century poetry but of that dark century itself, from the rise of the Nazis to the American bombing of North Vietnam, and yields too a rare insight into the nature of language and the splendours and limitations of translation.' - Gabriel Josipovici. 'In this series of delicate memoir essays about living in translation and living as a translator, Gansel tunes herself most sensitively into many states of language, from dwelling in a mother tongue to opening ways of surviving in exile and estrangement.' - Marina Warner. 'This memoir tells of a life forged by encounters, by the humble desire to reach out to and understand the other. It is a subtle, moving, and at times sad testimony that talks of poetry, the dialogue with consciousness, commitment and values that are essential to literature and to life itself.' La Quinzaine litteraireshow more

About Mireille Gansel

Mireille GANSEL has published translations of a number of distinguished poets including Nelly Sachs, Peter Huchel, and Reiner Kunze, as well as letters by Paul Celan. After living in Hanoi in the seventies, she published the first volume of classical Vietnamese poetry translated into French. Gansel's second and third books as an author, Une petite fenetre d'or and the poetry collection Comme une lettre, were published in France in more