As the year draws to a close, Asymptote staff members have been as busy as ever. Here is a selection of what our colleagues have been up to, from reviews written, to panels spoken on, and new blogs too.
Communications Manager Alexander Dickow contributed a review, “Mystery and Surprise: Two Chinese Poets,” and translations of Swiss poet and photographer Gustave Roud, to the 88th edition of Plume.
Senior Editor (Chinese) Chenxin Jiang discussed the political power of literary translation as part of a conference at the Centre d’études de la traduction at Paris VII.
Romania & Moldova Editor-at-Large Chris Tanasescu aka MARGENTO jointly (along with Raluca Tanasescu) contributed a book chapter entitled “Translator networks of networks in digital space: The case of Asymptote Journal” to the hot-off-the-press Complexity Thinking in Translation Studies from Routledge (eds. Kobus Marais & Reine Meylaerts).
Alex Cigale: “Le jardin reste ouvert pour ceux qui l’ont aimé.” Plume’s motto is the concluding line of Jacques Prévert’s “Vainement.” Could you connect for us Plume’s literary influences with the spot you see Plume inhabiting on the poetry journal literary map?
Danny Lawless: Michaux, Prevert, Follain, Parra, Ponge. These, and so many others, are transformational apparitions from a world beyond my provincial one, growing up in Louisville, Kentucky.
There was Breton, of course, the most famous name, whose poetry I now think did not prosper in the shade of his political and artistic manifestos that descended into fiats and excommunications. But one proceeds by allusion, right? A sort of overhearing. So in the course of taking in all of Breton—I was persistent—I made the acquaintance of Desnos, Reverdy, Char.
The book that all but exploded in my hands was Benedikt’s The Poetry of Surrealism: An Anthology. And so I read these people for years and years—over four decades, and when it was time to begin work on what would become Plume, there was no question regarding what its “aesthetic” would be. And, I suppose, making Plume was an act of conservation, for these poets had fallen out of fashion, if they were ever in it, in the United States.
I wanted to introduce these voices to other readers, to connect with those who knew and loved them as I did. I thought if future contributors had read as I had (and I discovered many had), then we would be of like minds, sharing certain affinities and antipathies—that their work would be what I liked and admired, and that publishing it would be a pleasure. READ MORE…