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Hybrid Hybrid Event
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(Hybrid) The International Library Part II: Translating Traditions

Thu 15 June 2023 @ 19 h 30 - 20 h 30

Hybrid Hybrid Event

Carmen Boullosa and Samantha Schnee consider translation many times over: from the Book of Genesis, to Boullosa's Book of Eve, to Schnee's translation of Boullosa.

A striking example of translation and its many layers—of language, of myth, of tradition—Samantha Schnee’s new English translation of Mexican author Carmen Boullosa’s The Book of Eve (El libro de Eva) twists, challenges, and ultimately revises a classic tale for a contemporary moment. As Eve, fueled by “fiery disobedience,” tells her own version of the Book of Genesis, she brazenly rejects the stories that have oppressed women across millennia. No, she was not created from Adam’s rib; no, she was not expelled from the Garden of Eden for nibbling a forbidden apple; and no, humanity was not deluged by a great flood. In person at the Center for Fiction (Brooklyn, NY) and over Zoom, join Schnee and Boullosa for a conversation about translation twice (and sometimes thrice) over.

About the speakers:

Carmen Boullosa is one of Mexico’s leading novelists, poets, and playwrights. She has published over a dozen novels, two of which were designated the Best Novel Published in Mexico by the prestigious magazine Reforma—her second novel, Before, also won the renowned Xavier Villaurrutia Prize for Best Mexican Novel; and her novel La otra mano de Lepanto was also selected as one of the Top 100 Novels Published in Spanish in the past 25 years. Her most recent novel, Texas: The Great Theft won the 2014 Typographical Era Translation Award, was shortlisted for the 2015 PEN Translation Award, and has been nominated for the 2015 International Dublin Literary Award. Boullosa has received numerous prizes and honors, including a Guggenheim fellowship. Also a poet, playwright, essayist, and cultural critic, Boullosa is a Distinguished Lecturer at City College of New York, and her books have been translated into Italian, Dutch, German, French, Portuguese, Chinese, and Russian.

Samantha Schnee is a 2023 National Endowment of the Arts Literature Fellow in Translation, supporting her work to render Boullosa’s Gijon Prize winning novel, El complot de los románticos, into English as Dante Hits the Road. Her translation of Boullosa’s Texas: The Great Theft was shortlisted for the PEN America Translation Prize. She is the founding editor of Words Without Borders.

Important information: The discussion will take place at the Center for Fiction in Brooklyn, New York. The conversation will be streamed at the Library and on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.

If you’d like to attend on Zoom OR in person in Brooklyn, please click the BLUE “ZOOM REGISTRATION BUTTON.” If you would like to attend the livestream of the event at the Library,  please click the RED “GOING” BUTTON above.

About The International Library

Conversations across time, place, and language

Join the American Library in Paris, the Center for the Art of Translation, and The Center for Fiction for conversations across time, place, culture, and literary tradition, with live audiences in San Francisco, Brooklyn, and Paris.

At the intersection of theory and practice, past and present, as well as story and history, The International Library celebrates the live diffusion of in-person conversations in the hope of conjuring new possibilities and connecting new audiences across land and sea for a collective, intercultural experience.

Over the course of these conversations, we hope to broach the following questions about writing and translation: Who gets to translate? To be translated? How to translate? And for whom to translate? More broadly, the series will guide readers to think critically about how stories are told, investigating the points of view, the timing of the translations, and the intended or assumed audiences as well as inspiration, philosophy, and craft.

All meetings will be hybrid, taking place in person at The Center for Fiction in Brooklyn (1:30pm ET) with audiences at the American Library in Paris (in Paris; 19h30 CEST) and the Center for the Art of Translation in San Francisco (10:30am PT) for a live streaming experience. Events will run for about an hour.

Please write to Alice McCrum (mccrum@americanlibraryinparis.org), Melanie McNair (melanie@centerforfiction.org), or Leslie-Ann Woofter (leslie-ann@catranslation.org) with any questions or thoughts.


The Center for Fiction
15 Lafayette Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11217 United States
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+1 212-755-6710
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(Hybrid) The International Library Part II: Translating Traditions
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