Virtual Event: Lydia Davis
On Proust, Translation, Foreign Languages,
and the City of Arles
in conversation with PARUL SEHGAL
November 30, 2021
7:00 PM ET
Join this virtual event by purchasing a ticket through Eventbrite
$41.00 (book included) - On Sale Now
Harvard Book Store joins independent bookstores across the country to welcome celebrated essayist, translator, and short story master LYDIA DAVIS for a discussion of her latest essay collection, Essays Two: On Proust, Translation, Foreign Languages, and the City of Arles. She will be joined in conversation by award-winning critic PARUL SEHGAL.
All tickets include a hardcover copy of Essays Two. U.S. shipping also included. Books bundled with tickets will be shipped out after the event. Please note: we are unable to ship internationally.
About Essays Two
In Essays One, Lydia Davis, who has been called “a magician of self-consciousness” by Jonathan Franzen and “the best prose stylist in America” by Rick Moody, gathered a generous selection of her essays about best writing practices, representations of Jesus, early tourist photographs, and much more. Essays Two collects Davis’s writings and talks on her second profession: the art of translation. The award-winning translator from the French reflects on her experience translating Proust (“A work of creation in its own right.” —Claire Messud, Newsday), Madame Bovary (“[Flaubert’s] masterwork has been given the English translation it deserves.” —Kathryn Harrison, The New York Times Book Review), and Michel Leiris (“Magnificent.” ―Tim Watson, Public Books). She also makes an extended visit to the French city of Arles, and writes about the varied adventures of learning Norwegian, Dutch, and Spanish through reading and translation.
Davis, a 2003 MacArthur Fellow and the winner of the 2013 Man Booker International Prize for her fiction, here focuses her unique intelligence and idiosyncratic ways of understanding on the endlessly complex relations between languages. Together with Essays One, this provocative and delightful volume cements her status as one of our most original and beguiling writers.
Praise for Essays Two
"While writing about writing can sometimes wander into theoretical, navel-gazing territory, Davis’s approach here is thrillingly concrete. Several pieces describe, in vivid, granular detail, her process for translating the first volume of Proust. She pops the hood and lets us see how the literary gears turn." —Cornelia Channing, Vulture
"[This] collection makes a case for the singular pleasures and rewards of translation." —Joumana Khatib, New York Times
“In this riveting and erudite collection (after Essays One), Davis documents the adventures and challenges of her work as a translator, moving with ease between the technical challenges posed by a complex text and her personal relationship with literature . . . Thorough, idiosyncratic, and inimitable, Davis is the kind of intelligent and attentive reader a book is lucky to find. Readers, in turn, are lucky to have this collection, a worthy addition to the Davis canon.” —Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
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