Just popping in to share the books that I will be reading as part of Women in Translation Month (WITMonth)!
WITMonth is an annual event hosted by Meytal at Biblibio each August. As she puts it, this event has the “designated purpose of encouraging readers, reviewers, translators and anyone really to take part in the dialogue about women writers in translation, as well as providing us all with a convenient outlet to explore more books by women writers in translation.”
Only about three to four percent of all books published in the U.S. each year were translated from another language, and very few of those books were written by women. It is unfortunate that the translated works that we do have disproportionately come from male authors because women have unique stories to tell and significant insights to share. I have only been consciously seeking out and reading translated works for a few years but some of my favorite discoveries were written by women.
This year, I have decided to devote my August to reading books by women writers in translation. A couple weeks ago, I made a list of all of the books written by women that were on my translation shelf and then spent a week or two narrowing it down to books available in my library system or accessible via interlibrary loan (ILL). Then I narrowed it down to those books I was most interested in reading – sooo difficult because there are so many that look great! Finally, I looked at genre/category to ensure that I had a little bit of everything that would fit my mood – literature, nonfiction, poetry, and kids’ lit.
It’s highly unlikely that I will get through all of these books but it’s nice to have a variety. My final list consisted of seven books but then I impulsively purchased one that wasn’t accessible to me.
So here is what I will be reading in August:
Blue Lorries by Radwa Ashour, tr. by Barbara Romaine (I bought this one!)
Who Ate Up All the Shinga? by Park Wan-suh, tr. by Yu Young-nan and Stephen Epstein
The Iraqi Nights by Dunya Mikhail, tr. by Kareem James Abu-Zeid
The Life of Rebecca Jones by Angharad Price, tr. by Lloyd Jones
My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante, tr. by Ann Goldstein
The Story of Zahra by Hanan al-Shaykh, tr. by Peter Ford
Atiya’s Journeys: A Muslim Woman from Colonial Bombay to Edwardian Britain by Atiya Fyzee, edited and translated by Siobhan Lambert-Hurley and Sunil Sharma
Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren, tr. by Tiina Nunnally