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Showing posts from February, 2015

Yuri Herrera explores the actual and psychological crossings and translations people make—with their feet, in their minds, and in their language as they move from one country to another, especially when there's no going back

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Yuri Herrera, Signs Preceding the End of the World. Trans. by Lisa Dillman, And Other Stories, 2015.





Signs Preceding the End of the World is one of the most arresting novels to be published in Spanish in the last ten years. Yuri Herrera does not simply write about the border between Mexico and the United States and those who cross it. He explores the crossings and translations people make in their minds and language as they move from one country to another, especially when there’s no going back.

Traversing this lonely territory is Makina, a young woman who knows only too well how to survive in a violent, macho world. Leaving behind her life in Mexico to search for her brother, she is smuggled into the USA carrying a pair of secret messages – one from her mother and one from the Mexican underworld



In this grippingly original novel Yuri Herrera explores the actual and psychological crossings and translations people make—with their feet, in their minds, and in their language as they move…

Tales of the Marvellous and News of the Strange - The earliest known Arabic short stories in the world. Crocodiles have pearls in their ears; statues move and speak

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Tales of the Marvellous and News of the Strange, Trans. by Malcolm C. Lyons, Intro. by Robert Irwin.Penguin Classics, 2015.

Read an excerpt of this book



On the shrouded corpse hung a tablet of green topaz with the inscription: 'I am Shaddad the Great. I conquered a thousand cities; a thousand white elephants were collected for me; I lived for a thousand years and my kingdom covered both east and west, but when death came to me nothing of all that I had gathered was of any avail. You who see me take heed: for Time is not to be trusted.' Dating from at least a millennium ago, these are the earliest known Arabic short stories, surviving in a single, ragged manuscript in a library in Istanbul. Some found their way into The Arabian Nights but most have never been read in English before. Tales of the Marvellous and News of the Strange has monsters, lost princes, jewels beyond price, a princess turned into a gazelle, sword-wielding statues and shocking reversals of fortune.


THIS mus…

Textures of the Anthropocene: Grain Vapor Ray - These volumes constitute a unique experiment in design and composition as well as content. The mingling of texts and the juxtaposition of different areas of knowledge represented in a variety of forms express the dynamics of a world in change

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Textures of the Anthropocene: Grain Vapor Ray, Ed. by Katrin Klingan, Ashkan Sepahvand, Christoph Rosol and Bernd M. Scherer, MIT Press, 2015. We have entered the Anthropocene era -- a geological age of our own making, in which what we have understood to be nature is made by man. We need a new way to understand the dynamics of a new epoch. These volumes offer writings that approach the Anthropocene through the perspectives of grain, vapor, and ray -- the particulate, the volatile, and the radiant. The first three volumes -- each devoted to one of the three textures -- offer a series of paired texts, with contemporary writers responding to historic writings. A fourth volume offers a guide to the project as a whole.
Grain: Granular materials add up to concrete forms; insignificant specks accumulate into complex entities. The texts in this …