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Pathways to Discovering the Obscure?

  The Life and Opinions of Zacharias Lichter by Matei Calinescu, translated from the Romanian by Adriana Calinescu and Breon Mitchell (New York Review Books) When I first started reading The Life and Opinions of Zacharias Lichter by Matei Calinescu, translated from the Romanian by Adriana Calinescu and Breon ...

Pierre Reverdy

To read a poem by Pierre Reverdy is to enter a world of dreamlike contradictions, surreal metaphors, and jarring juxtapositions. Marked by recurring themes of consciousness, time, distance, and memory, Reverdy’s work inhabits an otherworldly realm. As when viewing a cubist painting, it’s hard to maintain a sense of ...

Latest Review: "Pierre Reverdy" by Pierre Reverdy

The latest addition to our Reviews Section is by Catherine Partin on Pierre Reverdy’s Pierre Reverdy, a collection of the poet’s works translated by various authors, edited by Mary Ann Caws, and out from New York Review Books. Catherine is an avid reader with interests in French and Francophone literature, ...

Amsterdam Stories

Nescio, Koekebakker, J.H.F. Grönloh. Writing only in his spare time, he was known to most of the world as a respectable and prominent businessman, the director of the Holland-Bombay Trading Company: exactly the kind of man whom his early protagonists would scorn, and at whom his later protagonists would smile grimly, knowing ...

Latest Review: "Amsterdam Stories" by Nescio

The latest addition to our Reviews Section is by Hannah Chute on Amsterdam Stories by Nescio, from New York Review Books. Hannah is one of two Hannahs interning at Open Letter this summer. We’re still working on a good nickname for her—for now, depending on the situation, we (read: I) have been referring to the ...

"The Black Spider" by Jeremias Gotthelf [Books I'm Excited About]

I think it was two summers ago that I was last in Chicago for the annual Goethe Institut Helen and Kurt Wolff Translation Prize Extravaganza. (I love these gatherings. The award ceremony, the people involved with German literature, the panels, etc. It always seems to be a beautiful couple days weather-wise as well, which ...

Basti

The Urdu word basti refers to any space, intimate to worldly, and is often translated as “common place” or “a gathering place.” This book by Intizar Husain, who is widely regarded as one of the most important living Pakistani writers, traverses a number of cities, the connections between them, and the people who live ...